May 18, 2016 – Sakchyam Access to Finance Programme and Nepal Investment Bank Limited (NIBL) signed a partnership today to launch the latter’s Extension Counter services in Nagma Bazaar in Kalikot as well as establish 28 new Branchless Banking touch points (BLB) in Achham, Bajhang, Bajura, Darchula and Doti. The UKaid funded Sakchyam Programme is providing technical as well as Challenge Fund support to the Bank for the project duration of three years.
The Extension Counter being launched in Kalikot’s Nagma Bazaar is the first of its kind in the district, whereas the locations for the BLB services will mostly be small rural market areas where the population density is high enough to require such services. With the opening of this Extension Counter, NIBL also becomes the first private commercial bank to have a presence in Nagma, Kalikot and will provide remittance and savings-based services among others.
The Branchless Banking touch points being established are a part of Sakchyam’s larger Branchless Banking initiative that has committed to the establishment 414 BLBs in the mid- and far-western regions of Nepal as well as in the 14 districts most affected by the Gorkha Earthquake of April 25, 2015.
Speaking at the event, Mr. Baljit Vohra, Team Leader, Sakchyam said, “In the past 4 months, our partner banks have launched an additional 143 BLB touch points through our support; these points have opened over 8,400 accounts; executed over 12,000 transactions and collected over NRs. 19 million in deposits. This is a very good sign for financial inclusion in Nepal and we are happy to be beginning this new partnership with NIBL and are confident that the NIBL team will do all it can to further deepen access to financial services to the remotest communities through this project.”
Expressing his happiness at launching the partnership, Mr. Jyoti Prakash Pandey, CEO, Nepal Investment Bank Limited, said that the team was excited to be starting new service points to cater to rural poor communities in the far-western region. He also expressed his confidence that the team would achieve the same success as they have in other parts of the country.
NIBL has 46 Branches, 39 active Branchless Banking locations and has more than 22,000 BLB customers with more than 200,000 BLB transactions till date.
Sakchyam is an UKaid funded access to finance programme. It is being implemented by Louis Berger for DFID Nepal in partnership with local and international institutions.