Vietnamese banks take measures to help coronavirus-hit businesses

10:03 | 08/03/2020 Economy

Commercial banks in Vietnam have provided assistance to more than 44,000 business customers affected by the coronavirus outbreak by delaying loan repayments, lowering interest rates, cutting fees and introducing new credit programs.

The conference to discuss banks' support for coronavirus-hit businesses

Such measures have been taken with more than VND222 trillion (US$9.56 billion) worth of outstanding loans, according to reports at a conference hosted by the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) on February 2.

Head of SBV’s credit department Nguyen Quoc Hung said the coronavirus outbreak has caused many businesses to be unable to repay their loans on time, resulting in increased bad debt and debt arrears.

Reports by 23 banks showed an estimated VND926 trillion (US$39.9 billion) in outstanding loans affected by the virus outbreak, accounting for 14.27% of total loans by these banks.

Some of the hardest hit sectors include agriculture, tourism, accommodation and food services, transport, garments, footwear and electronics.

As part of measures to cushion the impacts of the coronavirus outbreak, nearly 30 banks and the National Payment Corporation of Vietnam (NAPAS) also rolled out wire transfer fee reduction or elimination in order to share the difficulties with their customers and boost non-cash payment.

Speaking at the conference, SBV Deputy Governor Dao Minh Tu asked credit institutions to build on the initial results and step up their efforts in order to support coronavirus-hit businesses.

Theo NDO