Singapore to help individuals and SMEs during Covid-19 pandemic

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Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) recently announced a package of measures which it has rolled out together with the Association of Banks in Singapore, the Life Insurance Association, the General Insurance Association and the Finance Houses Association of Singapore to help individuals and SMEs in need during this period of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In a statement, MAS said that, they have worked with financial institutions in Singapore to offer options for individuals in need to lower their short-term repayment obligations for their property loans and unsecured credit debts.

“Options have also been made available for individuals to stay insured even though they may be facing financial difficulties and are unable to pay their insurance policy premiums.

“Individuals considering these options should check with their lenders and insurers, as the case may be, on the costs and benefits of the options, and how it may affect their future obligations. For instance, a deferment of principal repayment on a housing loan will continue to accrue interest over the period. This has to be repaid after the deferment,” it said.

MAS has also worked with financial institutions in Singapore to offer options for SMEs in need to lower their short-term repayment obligations for their secured loans and to stay insured despite facing financial difficulties.

“SMEs should enquire on the associated costs and benefits before taking up any of the options. They may also see the cost of their business loans obtained under Enterprise Singapore’s SME Working Capital Loan and Temporary Bridging Loan schemes be lowered further through the availability of MAS’ funding to banks and finance companies.

“The lenders may apply to MAS for funding and are required to pass on any cost savings to SMEs,” the source added.

Aside from ensuring the well-functioning of the Singapore Government Securities (SGS) market, MAS has provided SGD and USD liquidity to the bank system. It has also established new MAS USD facility to provide US$60 billion funding to banks in Singapore.

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