Banking in Sierra Leone consists of a central bank, the Bank of Sierra Leone, seven commercial banks, and six community banks. The Civil War destroyed many of the branches of the countries commercial banks and as of 2005 there were 34 commercial bank branches the majority in the major towns. Procedures for obtaining loans have been assessed as very complicated and there is a relatively low ratio of private credit to GDP at just over 4 percent.
Community banks play the role of extended financial services to local communities who are not able to access the commercial banks. They are also designed to help development within Sierra Leone by supporting the governments microfinancing program and empowering local communities.