State-owned Bank of Baroda on 12th February 2018 has decided to exit by March-end its South Africa operations after 21 years amid a probe into alleged compliance lapses by the bank there. The branch will stop taking new/incremental deposits and disbursing loans with effect from March 1, 2018. Further, it will cease to operate and conduct the business of a bank with effect from March 31, 2018. The bank had initiated operations in South Africa about 21 years ago.
The South African Reserve Bank is investigating allegations regarding compliance lapses at the bank’s branch there and it was cooperating in the matter.The bank was responding to clarifications sought by exchanges regarding a news report citing the bank’s involvement with a particular Indian origin family in South Africa extending to a political scandal there.
Report referred to the bank’s dealings with one Gupta family, now settled in South Africa and follows information furnished by the bank to exchanges in August 2017 about paying Rs 5.45 crore as penalty that was imposed on its South Africa branch by the local regulator.