COVID-19: CBN Offers Reliefs On OFIs Sector Loans

  • Drops annual interest rates from 9% to 5%
  • Holds MPC meeting Thursday, May 28

BY VICTOR OSOWOCHI, ABUJA – The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has reduced interest rates on its facilities through participating Other Financial Institutions (OFIs) from nine per cent (9%) to five per cent (5%) per annum for one year effective March 1, 2020.

The CBN said the initiative is part of its sustained efforts to mitigate the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on households, businesses and regulated institutions in the country

This is as the apex bank also said that it has concluded arrangements to hold the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting for this month  on Thursday, May 28, 2020.

A circular issued on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 in Abuja and signed by the Director, Financial Policy and Regulation Department, CBN, Kevin Amugo, also indicated that CBN intervention facilities obtained through participating OFIs, Microfinance Banks (MFBs), Primary Mortgage Banks, and Institutions, among others, will be given a further one-year moratorium on all principal repayments, also effective March 1, 2020.

According to the circular, OFIs have equally been granted leave to consider temporary and time limited restructuring of the tenor and loan terms for households and businesses affected by COVID-19, subject to the recently issued guidelines for restructuring affected credit facilities in the OFI sub-sector.

CBN’s Director, Corporate Communications Department, Isaac Okorafor, who spoke on the apex Bank’s decision, said the Management approval for restructuring credit facilities in the Other Financial Institutions (OFI) sub-sector was in line with CBN’s desire to alleviate momentary strain on households, businesses and regulated institutions triggered by the lockdown due to COVID-19.

He said CBN would also continue to monitor developments and implement appropriate measures to safeguard financial stability and support stakeholders impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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