The six month bank loan repayment moratorium introduced to buffer the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, will not be extended further.

Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Aziz told Parliament that borrowers must beginning servicing their loans from October, after the moratorium which was introduced on April 1, ends on Sept 30.

"The moratorium is for six months, that is until September 2020. The amount that has been allocated for this is about RM100 billion.

"So the next step after discussions; discussions are still underway with local banks to help in a more targeted manner," the minister reportedly said in reply to Ahmad Maslan (Pontian-Umno), according to Malay Mail.

Among the methods of targeted assistance to borrowers are extending the loan repayment tenure or changing the interest rate to reduce the monthly repayments, among others, he was quoted.

With many businesses still struggling to gain their footing, and the unemployment rate as of May standing at a whopping 5.3 percent, following the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO)enforced to contain the spread of COVID-19, certain quarters have called for the prolonging of the moratorium until at least next year.

However, Tengku Zafrul said that a further extension to the moratorium is not needed as most businesses have been allowed to resume operations and borrowers should consequently be able to make their loan payments by now.

He urged borrowers who think they may face problems in resuming loan repayments in October to approach their respective banks for renegotations.

Source: Malay Mail, The Star
Photo source: Astro Awani