* Q1 net profit rises to 5.9 trln rupiah vs 4.1 trln year ago
* Fee-based income up nearly 15 pct
* Gross NPL ratio fell to 3.32 pct at end of qtr vs 3.98 pct yr ago (Adds details of results)
JAKARTA, April 24 (Reuters) - PT Bank Mandiri Tbk, Indonesia’s second-largest bank by assets, reported on Tuesday a 44 percent jump in quarterly net profit as it slashed provisions for bad loans and its fee-based income climbed.
Mandiri’s first-quarter net profit stood at 5.9 trillion rupiah ($425 million), chief executive Kartika Wirjoatmodjo told reporters, up from 4.1 trillion rupiah a year ago.
Mandiri lowered its provisioning costs by 29 percent from a year earlier, Wirjoatmodjo said while net interest income rose by 3.2 percent and fee-based income rose nearly 15 percent.
The gross non-performing loan (NPL) ratio, a measure of bad loans, stood at 3.32 percent at the end of the first quarter compared to 3.98 percent a year earlier.
The bank was under pressure last year to tackle bad debts after the company posted its worst profit in five years in 2016. It slashed provisioning costs by 35 percent in 2017.
“The NPL fell quite significantly and we hope it can drop to 2.7 percent by the end of this year,” Wirjoatmodjo said.
Seventeen analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S are on average estimating a net income of 25.33 trillion rupiah for Mandiri in 2018. ($1 = 13,885.0000 rupiah) (Reporting by Cindy Silviana; Writing by Fransiska Nangoy; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)