Loan moratoriums for those who lost jobs and B40 group

By John Isaac

THE option of a three-month loan repayment moratorium or a 50 percent reduction in loan instalments for six months is being made available to borrowers who lost their jobs as well those in the B40 category and affected SMEs and microenterprises.

This is among the financial assistance programmes being offered by banks in the face of rising economic challenges caused by Covid-19.

The Association of Banks in Malaysia (ABM) told Malaysiakini that it would like to reiterate that the moratorium for three months or reduction of monthly instalments by 50 percent for six months is not just for those who have lost their employment.

ABM said that the following groups are eligible for assistance:

– B40 recipients of the Bantuan Sara Hidup (BSH) or Bantuan Prihatin Rakyat (BPR)

– Microenterprises and SMEs that are not allowed to operate during the Movement Control Order (locked-down sectors)

– Individuals who have recently suffered loss of employment due to the pandemic.

“Eligible customers may apply for our programmes and choose either a three-month deferment or up to 50 percent reduction in monthly instalments for six months,” said participating banks HSBC Bank Malaysia and HSBC Amanah Malaysia in a statement.

“All retail customers with reduced income, may also apply for a reduction in monthly instalments for six months.”

A three-month deferment is financially equivalent to a 50 percent reduction for six months although having both options give borrowers some degree of flexibility.

The move follows the unveiling of a RM40 billion economic aid dubbed Pemerkasa Plus by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on May 31, the eve of the June 1 to 14 full lockdown. – Malaysiakini