SB account number portability on anvil:FinMin

New Delhi: The Finance Ministry is working on savings banks account number portability, which will allow a customer to retain his account number while changing his bank. "We want to do it (savings a/c number portability). Right now there are some technical problems…we have identified them. We will overcome them soon," Financial Services Secretary D K Mittal told reporters here.

He was speaking after a meeting in the Ministry, which among others was attended by Economic Affairs Secretary R Gopalan, Finance Secretary R S Gujral and Chief Economic Adviser Kaushik Basu. He said banks would have to work on identification code, know your customers (KYC) norms and core banking solution (CBS) for implementing the savings bank account number portability.

The move would help customers change banks, without the need of going through the KYC norms again. Last year, the government had allowed portability of mobile numbers and health insurance policies. In October last year, the Reserve Bank had deregulated interest rates on savings account deposits, following which few private sector lenders have hiked rates to as much as 7 per cent.

Mittal further said capital infusion in PSU banks would be completed by the end of this fiscal. "We will complete the process of bank recapitalisation by March 31," he said. The government has already announced that it is committed to providing adequate capital to public sector banks, so as to maintain their Tier-I capital at 8 per cent. The government has made Budget provision of Rs 6,000 crore for capital infusion in PSU banks in the current fiscal. State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Union Bank of India, IDBI Bank and Syndicate Bank are some of the lenders which will be benefited by the capital infusion initiative of the government.