Commercial banks in Vietnam reported bad debts at 3.49 percent of their outstanding loans in January 2015, up from 3.25 percent the previous month, a state-run newspaper quoted a central banker on Saturday as saying.
But the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) estimated the bad debts in the system at 4.75 percent in January, down from 4.83 percent in December 2014, Deputy Governor Nguyen Thi Hong was quoted by the Thanh Nien (Young People) newspaper as saying.
"The gap between these two figures is narrowing," Hong was quoted as telling a parliamentary session on Friday, referring to the estimate based on banks' reports and the central bank's own assessment. She gave no values of the debts.
Vietnam is recovering from a toxic debt headache and real estate slump caused by unrestrained lending and costly investments by state-run firms in non-core areas. Its non-performing loans (NPLs) ratios have been among Asia's highest.
The SBV has moved to consolidate the banking sector by increasing credit growth, steering mergers and acquisitions and boosting capital for its asset management firm to buy bad debt, with aims to cut the NPLs ratio to below 3 percent by the end of 2015.