THE Finance Ministry will launch a pilot programme next month in which ACLEDA Bank Plc will handle funds used for revenue and expenditure transactions, including the payment of government salaries, a National Treasury official told the Post Sunday.
Vong Bunintreavuth, deputy director of the National Treasury of Cambodia, said a memorandum of understanding about the programme would be signed today by the ministry and the bank.
He said the pilot programme would be implemented in Kandal and Banteay Meanchey provinces beginning July 1.
Revenue and expenditure transactions are currently executed through the National Bank of Cambodia (NBC). Vong Bunintreavuth said the decision to switch to ACLEDA was intended to "make public financial management accountability more effective, especially in relation to national revenue and expenditures management".
He said the ministry went with ACLEDA because of the size of its branches and its ability to reach remote rural areas.
In Channy, ACLEDA's president and chief executive, said the bank has 229 branches and 6,900 employees.
NBC Director General Tal Nay Im acknowledged Sunday that ACLEDA had a much wider network, as the NBC only has branches in provincial towns. "It will be easier than to do the transactions with the central bank," she said.
Vong Bunintreavuth said the project, if successful, would be extended to five other provinces and potentially nationwide. He said he did not know when the first phase would be completed.
In Channy said Sunday that the move was an expression of the government's confidence in the bank.
"ACLEDA Bank Plc has wide experience, good governance, sufficient human and strong financial resources, the best risk management system, and it was rated as stable by the international rating institutes," he said.