Gov't asking banks to extend loan moratorium period to one year
Premier Andrew Fahie is calling on all banks in the British Virgin Islands to extend their moratorium period on personal and business loans to up to 12 months.
Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, the Premier said government has been actively negotiating with banks for more favourable agreements to help residents endure the economic fallouts related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Premier had initially requested local banks to extend their moratoriums for up to six months, but because of the continued impacts caused by COVID-19, he said he believes one year is a more plausible period.
“We cannot continue to act in COVID-19, which is something that is not normal, and apply normal procedure to it. So I am asking the bank and discussing with them to stretch from your normal three months and six months, and go straight into the one year so that the moratorium could more effectively help the people of the Virgin Islands,” Fahie said.
The Premier said the government has also asked the banks to review the “penalties [on these loans] to ensure that people get proper relief”.
The Finance Minister further said “government is continuing discussions with them” on the matter.
Last month, six banks across the territory announced that they were offering various moratorium packages to their customers, with some lasting up to six months.
These banks included FirstBank, Banco Popular, National Bank of the Virgin Islands, VP Bank, Scotiabank, and CIBC First Caribbean International Bank.