Laos Largest Bank; Agriculture Promotion Bank Goes Live on ElectraCard Services’ electraSWITCH


INDIACSR News Network

NEW DELHI: ElectraCard Services (ECS), a leading provider of software and processing solutions for electronic payment systems announced that Agriculture Promotion (AP) Bank, Laos has gone live on ECS’ electra payments suite. AP Bank, the largest public sector bank in Laos is ECS’s second customer in Laos and further consolidates ECS leadership position in South –East Asia. The electra platform will power AP Bank’s endeavour to offer electronic banking services to its existing customers.

ECS’ electraSWITCH and electraDEBIT solution will facilitate AP Bank to offer their customers access to a wide range of delivery channels including ATMs, POS, internet, mobile and IVR. The bank also plans to leverage the electra suite to roll out innovative and effective ways to deliver value to its account cardholders. ECS’ system will be connected with ATM pool network in Laos, enabling AP Bank customers to carry out transactions across the network’s ATMs in Laos.

The electra suite of payments is a robust, secure, flexible and highly scalable solution that is used by renowned financial institutions worldwide. Electra suite of payments combines performance with scalability that helps banks and financial institutes to rapidly implement and roll out solutions on-the-go. Electra solutions will assist Agriculture Promotion Bank deliver products and services at a price point that ally their business needs.

Bouangeunh Phongsavath, General Director, Agriculture Promotion Bank said, “Agriculture Promotion Bank aims to be the first choice for Laotian farmers and provide support for rural finance that will contribute to Laos’ economic growth and prosperity. Laos banking sector is witnessing momentous growth and advancement and banks need to match their velocity with this changing environment to offer ease and variety of banking and financial services and products to Laotians. ECS was a preferred choice because of its proven market experience with the leading local South-East Asian banks, faster speed of implementation and reputation for successful projects across the region.”

“ECS is delighted to assist Agriculture Promotion Bank in their endeavour to change and improve the quality of lives of millions of people in Laos and we are confident that ECS’ solutions can successfully help them achieve their goals,” said Mr. Ramesh Mengawade, CEO, ElectraCard Services.

The Agriculture Promotion Bank (APB) was established in 1993 as a state-owned policy bank, and has since been considered as the country development bank, focusing on the agricultural sector. APB is the main public instrument in rural finance, with 50% of total lending directed towards policy lending. 120,000 households (15% of the population) have access to the APB. Among them, 40,000 (5%) have access to its microfinance initiatives. APB provides mostly commercial credit. In microfinance, it uses group lending techniques, modelled on APB itself, which target rice production and livestock. With a maximum of 3 years term, APB loans have a subsidized interest rate of 12% per year. This low interest rate attracts the interest of non-poor groups, which in turn restrict the access to the poor, and increase corruption.

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