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Tanzanian central bank fines lender for breaching rules 

DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) – Tanzania’s central bank on Saturday said it had fined Diamond Trust Bank Tanzania Limited 1 billion Tanzanian shillings ($435,000) for breaching regulatory rules on data and service availability. 

“The Bank of Tanzania (BoT) has imposed a penalty charge of one billion shillings to Diamond Trust Bank … for failure to implement a directive to establish a data center in Tanzania,” the central bank said in a statement e-mailed to Reuters.

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“BoT … directed all banks and financial institutions operating in Tanzania to establish either a primary or secondary data center in Tanzania with a view to ensure data and service availability at all times.”

Diamond Trust Bank Tanzania did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

The central bank has tightened regulatory oversight over commercial banks and other financial institutions in the East African nation over the past few years.

Tanzania’s financial services sector, which is dominated by lenders like CRDB Bank and NMB Bank, has been hit by a spike in bad loans, which have stifled the growth of credit to the private sector.

In December, the International Monetary Fund said nearly half of Tanzania’s 45 banks were vulnerable to adverse shocks and risked insolvency in the event of a global financial crisis.

Tanzania’s central bank has revoked the licenses of at least nine banks since 2017, saying the move was aimed at safeguarding the stability of the sector.

The closure of the banks comes after President John Magufuli ordered the central bank to take action against failing financial institutions.

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