Banking for rural transformation: issues for '90s
Gupta, Anil K.
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Banking for rural transformation in nineties will face many challenges that require hard choices. Challenges from demand side include (a) declining profitability and sustainability of agriculture, (b) continued stagnation in rural employment, marginalization of land holdings and thus need for self employment for large rural masses not likely to find productive avenues in far or industrial sector in the near future, (c) rising aspirations of rural disadvantaged people expecting speedy redressal of their historical deprivation, (d) increasing regional imbalances and worsening ecological imbalance in high risk environments triggering in some cases social conflicts and (e) diversification of skills and resource use options requiring flexible eco-specific institutional response. On supply side, the key complexities are : (a) increasing budget deficit and reduced ability of state to subsidise the growth and distribution oriented policies, (b) increasing cost of lending with declining profitability of banking system as a whole, (c) manpower constraints with banks to provide adequate follow up of loans and reduced ability to discriminate between genuine and willful defaulter, (d) weakening of relationship between rural borrowers and bank staff due to very large and wide coverage, and 'lightening of lines of control and weakening of housekeeping', (e) insufficient upgradation of skills of bank officials to deal with group or common property based investments or other means of reducing transaction costs, (f) mismatch between banking technology and work load, (g) lack of suitability of 'standardised organizational design for highly variable environmental needs' etc.
- Working Papers