BNM says banks will continue to offer targeted loan repayment assistance to borrowers when moratorium ends

KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 13): Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor Datuk Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus said today banks in the country will continue to offer the Covid-19 pandemic-driven targeted loan-repayment assistance to borrowers when the loan-repayment moratorium expires by the end of 2021.

Nor Shamsiah said that with the reopening of the economy, the central bank expects loan-repayment assistance to be more targeted as the financial needs and circumstances will differ among borrowers.

She recognises the fact that there will be borrowers who may continue to face challenges in repaying their loans when the moratorium ends. "For such borrowers, there are avenues available to help them manage their debt obligations," she said at a virtual press conference today in conjunction with the announcement of Malaysia's economic data for the second quarter of 2021 (2Q21).

According to her, borrowers can discuss with their banks as financial institutions may offer alternative loan repayment plans to borrowers.

The alternative loan repayment plans may include further extending the loan-repayment moratorium for specific borrowers at the respective banks' discretion, according to her.

Nor Shamsiah said borrowers can also approach BNM's Credit Counselling and Debt Management Agency to seek advice on managing their debt.

The Credit Counselling and Debt Management Agency is also known as Agensi Kaunseling dan Pengurusan Kredit (AKPK).

On small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), she said they can obtain loans from various government funds.

"These avenues will have borrowers achieving more enduring solutions beyond the pandemic by also focusing on support needed for borrowers to get back on a firmer financial footing over the longer term," she said.

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