Banco Nacional de Costa Rica Extends Credit for Covid-19

The coronavirus has left an economic impact in several countries. For this reason, some governments are developing exceptional measures to mitigate its effects. For example, the suspension of tax and mortgage payments to lessen the economic pressure on small businesses and households.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

In the United States, interest rates were reduced to almost zero and a US$700 billion stimulus program was launched in a bid to protect its economy, says Mario Miranda, director of finance at MonederoSMART.

Many people take out personal loans with mortgage guarantees because the requirements are usually less demanding and the lending institution usually offers very competitive terms and interest rates compared to other types of loans. However, the global economic recession, which may hit employment hard, could affect many borrowers through a drop in economic activity," Miranda adds.

In response, some financial institutions are making adjustments to their lending operations. In this context, the National Bank has applied immediate financial relief to 107,305 credits, by re-educating them through an extension. This execution includes housing loans, cards, consumer loans and vehicles for non-salaried persons and pensioners, for a total of 55,090 operations. For their part, 52,215 loans to micro, small and medium enterprises, as well as businessmen with corporate loans, perceived a change in their credit operations.

"For us in the BN Conglomerate it represents a great satisfaction, to contribute with the financial relief of thousands of our clients, who we know that at this moment they are facing great challenges due to the health crisis that we are living in the world, due to the COVID-19. Our responsibility is to act, in this first phase, with those who have seen their income suddenly reduced due to this emergency," said Gustavo Vargas, general manager of Banco Nacional.

Because of the country's estimated relatively high unemployment rate, the general manager has indicated that the National Bank remains committed to protecting jobs in Costa Rica. In addition, he indicated that the "institution would work to alleviate the situation of large, medium, small, and micro businesses, in order to prevent their workers from losing their jobs and increasing the number of unemployed," he said.

The client sectors benefited in this first stage are Corporate Banking (large companies) and Medium Business; specifically, for clients in the Tourism and Commerce sectors. Small and Micro businesses, which applies to all debtors in this segment (regardless of the type of loan and sector). People with Housing, Consumer and Vehicle loans; it is developed for all non-salaried and pensioned debtors. Finally, credit card clients, for all non-salaried and pensioned debtors.

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