With the main objective of providing institutional credit for enhancing the production and productivity of the agricultural sector in the country, the Agricultural Development Bank, Nepal was established in 1968 under the ADBN Act 1967, as successor to the cooperative Bank. The Land Reform Savings Corporation was merged with ADBN in 1973. Subsequent amendments to the Act empowered the bank to extend credit to small farmers under group liability and expand the scope of financing to promote cottage industries. The amendments also permitted the bank to engage in commercial banking activities for the mobilization of domestic resources.
Agricultural Development Bank Limited (ADBL) is an autonomous organization largely owned by Government of Nepal. The bank has been working as a premier rural credit institution since the last three decades, contributing a more than 67 percent of institutional credit supply in the country. Hence, rural finance is the principal operational area of ADBL. Besides, it has also been executing Small Farmer Development Program (SFDP), the major poverty alleviation program launched in the country. Furthermore, the bank has also been involved in commercial banking operations since 1984.
The enactment of Bank and Financial Institution Ordinance (BAFIO) in February 2004 abolished all Acts related to financial institutions including the ADBN Act, 1967. In line with the BAFIO, ADBL has been incorporated as a public limited company on July 14, 2005. Thus, ADBL operates as a "A" category financial Institution under the legal framework of BAFIO and the Company Act, 2053.