The troubled Long-Term Credit Bank of Japan, now under temporary state control, submitted a restructuring plan to the government pledging more job cuts and decreased overseas operations, the president of the LTCB announced Friday.
The government authorized the plan the same day, and the LTCB’s management will begin implementing it, LTCB President Takashi Anzai told a news conference. “The plan is aimed at minimizing the cost of state control on the part of the public,” he said. “We will maintain the value of the LTCB and sell it off to other financial institutions in an effort to end state control as early as possible.”
Under the plan, the bank will cut an additional 300 jobs to bring its workforce to 2,500 from the present 3,500, going further than a previously announced reduction to 2,800 by March 31, Anzai said.
To cut costs, LTCB will also close overseas operations, consolidate affiliates and sell assets such as outlets, computer facilities and sports grounds, he said. The bank currently maintains 10 branches abroad, including London, New York, Singapore, Hong Kong, Seoul and Bangkok.
The plan eyes a reduction of operating expenses from 89.1 billion yen at the end of last March to 82 billion yen next March and eventually 65 billion yen.
The LTCB plans to keep providing loans to sound borrowers and to customers that are likely to pose only low repayment risks. For the second category, an appropriate provision for possible loan losses will be made.
The LTCB will cut off loans to borrowers with high repayment risks and bankrupt customers, and existing loans to them will be passed on to the planned Japanese version of the U.S. Resolution Trust Corp., the plan shows.
Meanwhile, an operation surveillance panel has been established with four lawyers and certified public accountants to check lending, loan collection, asset disposal and other operations, according to the plan.
In addition, seven lawyers have been appointed to form an in-house investigative committee to consider the advisability of filing civil or criminal suits against the bank’s former management for possible mismanagement, the plan says.
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