BNM: 6 months moratorium on all bank loans (except credit card balances)

Just in case you still did not receive this via Whatsapp and you forgotten to login to Facebook and for some of us who have never listened to the news on tv today, here’s a big news for Malaysia from our Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM). It’s now an automatic six-month moratorium on all bank loans – except for credit card balances.

Article in In a statement by the central bank’s deputy governor Jessica Chew, BNM said the measure was designed to ease the cash flow of small and medium-sized enterprises and individuals that are likely to be most affected by Covid-19.

“Banking institutions will grant an automatic moratorium on all loan/financing repayments/payments, principal and interest (except for credit card balances) by individuals and SME borrowers/customers for a period of six months from April 1, 2020.”

The moratorium is automatically applicable to loans and financing that are not in arrears exceeding 90 days as at April 1, 2020 and is denominated in Malaysian Ringgit.

““For corporate borrowers/customers, banking institutions are strongly encouraged to facilitate requests for a moratorium on loan/financing repayment/payment in a way that will enable viable corporations to preserve jobs and swiftly resume economic activities when conditions stabilise and improve.

“This may also include the appropriate consideration of additional financing to support immediate cashflows and the rescheduling and restructuring of existing facilities to allow reasonable time for businesses to fully recover from current disruptions,” said Chew.

The statement from Bank Negara Malaysia is a long one. Please read a more complete one in the Article in

Briefly, if you REALLY have difficulty to pay your home loan, you have 6 months to work yourself out of the situation. Reminder, ONLY IF. It’s also to help the SMEs so that they could stay focused on the business and not to worry everyday with the loans and financings they have taken earlier for business expansion for example.

I do think this is a good thought because we would definitely prefer to have a V-shaped recovery. If we do not help the businesses, once it close down, it will be much tougher to reopen and recovery will thus be even slower. I believe this measure is a pre-emptive one to help businesses as much as possible. They may not need to retrench and these workers will continue to have salary to spend. The economy is key as soon as COVID-19 is over.

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