Thai banks offer 2-month debt moratorium for SMEs hit by semi-lockdown
Small and medium-sized businesses in areas of Thailand under semi-lockdown and control measures will be granted a debt and interest moratorium for July and August, as part of a new financial rescue package jointly worked out by the Bank of Thailand, the Thai Bankers’ Association and the Foreign Banks Association.
This package is also being extended to employees working for these affected SMEs, said Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith today (Thursday).
He said that a series of financial measures, including debt repayment extensions and debt refinancing until end of this year, have been rolled out by the Finance Ministry, in cooperation with private financial institutions, since the first outbreak of COVID-19 early last year.
He also said, however, that the pandemic has worsened lately, prompting the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) to impose stricter measures in 10 provinces, including Bangkok, adding that the Finance Ministry has found it necessary to help the SMEs being badly affected by the measures and their indebted employees.
The finance minister said that businesses which are still operational, although affected by the semi-lockdown measures, may receive help if necessary and in line with their financial status.
On top of that, after the two-month debt moratorium period, Mr. Arkhom said that commercial banks have been asked not to demand debt repayment immediately from their debtors, adding that debtors can contact their banks’ call centres to seek further relief.
The Finance Ministry will closely follow up the implementation of this rescue package and may roll out more measures to help the debtors if necessary, he said.