ICICI Bank has an exposure of approximately Rs. 760 crore to Hin Leong Trading Pte, a Singapore-based oil company that is facing legal action for not disclosing losses amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars over the last few years.
According to a report in MoneyControl, ICICI aren’t the only lenders with exposure to the company. Other banks include HSBC, ABN Amro, DBS Bank, Societe Generale and Bank of China among others.
ICICI Bank did not comment on the matter for now, the news report further added.
Previously, Reuters had reported that after reviewing a court filing that the founder and director of HLT had directed the firm not to disclose losses made.
The affidavit signed by one Lim Oon Kuin, a Singaporean national, is part of a April 17 filing to the Singapore High Court by HLT and subsidiary Ocean Tankers (Pte), seeking a six-month moratorium on debts of $3.85 billion to 23 banks, the news agency further reported.
Furthermore, Reuters had also reported – citing an anonymous ICICI Bank source – that the Indian lender is seeking the impounding of two vessels operated by Ocean Tankers (Pte).
Shares of ICICI Bank fell about 4 percent on April 20.
The court filing cites a collapse in the oil price and the coronavirus pandemic, which has hammered oil demand and pushed up costs for HLT, one of Asia’s largest oil traders.
Despite reporting net profit of $78.2 million for the business year ended in October, “HLT has not been earning profits over the last few years,” Lim said in the filing, which has not been made public.
HLT is reeling under heavy debts of some $3 billion and is also bearing the brunt of a cutthroat price war among the big oil producing states.