NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 13 – Absa Bank Kenya PLC has restructured over 50,000 loan facilities amounting to over Sh54 billion as part of its commitment to cushion customers from the adverse economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Absa Bank Kenya Managing Director Jeremy Awori said the bank’s loan relief programme covers all types of credit types including personal loans, mortgages, asset financing and business loans among others.
The bank’s debt relief seekers qualify for an initial relief of up to three months which can be further reviewed on a case by case basis.
According to the bank, more than 90 percent of the restructured loans are in the personal and small business segments with the remainder split between mid-sized companies and large corporates.
“We recognize that it is a hard time for our customers with a lot of businesses having scaled-down operations and others closing down. This has resulted in strained cash flows for some of our customers and we are working together with them through this loan relief program to reduce the burden on their monthly financial obligations,” said Awori.
The relief, which is being determined on a case-by-case basis, will not see the banks customers charged any extra processing fees to get the repayment relief.
However, during the repayment holiday, interest continues to accrue on and the customer’s loan repayment period is extended to accommodate the relief.
“Coronavirus is not just a health crisis but also a major economic crisis which has hit our economy hard. We encourage customers who may be going through tough financial times to reach out to us so that we can jointly explore suitable relief options,” Awori said.
“Customers with scheme/check-off loan arrangements are encouraged to engage their employers so they can in turn reach out to the bank and agree on applicable repayment relief,” he added.
The Central Bank of Kenya in May ordered banks to consider measures that will soften pressure on borrowers as they support the fight against the spreading virus.
The bank regulator in late April revealed that the industry players had restructured loans worth Sh273 billion.