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Andhra Bank to enter Dubai this month, explores US market

Written by: Staff
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Mumbai, May 2 (UNI) Following the recent banking industry trend of increasing PLR, Andhra Bank too has raised its prime lending rate by 50 basis points from 10.5 per cent to 11 per cent with immediate effect.

Interacting with journalists here today, the bank's chairman and managing director K Ramakrishnan said that the bank will be taking its first step overseas this month by opening its office in Dubai on May 11.

''We are also exploring possibilities of opening our branches in the US,'' Mr Ramakrishnan revealed, adding that while RBI approvals for the same have been obtained, regulatory approvals from the US side would take some more time to materialise.

''The Federal Reserve will be screening our application,'' he said, adding that ''setting up branches in the US can be done only after a thorough screening by both the Federal Reserve and the US state regulatory bodies.'' Andhra Bank's global strategy is to focus only on those markets where there is a sizeable Andhraite population such as New York, New Jersey, and California, he said.

The bank will soon be launching its Internet payment gateway as well as Internet banking and enhance its value-added offerings to its customers.

Andhra Bank has also formulated an ambitious branch network expansion programme and has applied to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for approval to open 100 more branches this year. ''This will take our branch strength from the present 1,213 to 1,313 while our ATM network will be augmented from the present strength of 391 to 491 by the end of this fiscal,'' said Mr Ramakrishnan.

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