The State Bank of India (SBI) on Saturday welcomed competition in the banking sector but apprehended that IDFC’s entry into banking may impact the infrastructure sector.
“We welcome RBI’s decision on banking licence. Only thing is that IDFC was a major player in the infrastructure segment. Now they will need to build their own portfolio to balance their book,” said SBI chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya.
“Going forward, I don’t see them playing a big role in infrastructure, which for the sector is not good. We need all the people we can get to fund infrastructure sector,” Bhattacharya added while speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the 49th Convocation of IIM Calcutta.
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It had been reported that Infrastructure finance major IDFC would reduce its exposure to the infrastructure sector over the next 18 months as it readies to enter the universal banking space.
Bhattacharya said SBI would not, however, increase its exposure into the infrastructure space in order to fill the vacuum to be created by IDFC’s decision to cut exposure. “We are not going to jump in to filling that vacuum,” she said.