The economic impact that Covid-19 is having on individual South Africans and South Africa as a whole is enormous, especially in conjunction with the various necessary restrictions put in place to reduce its spread. Luckily, a good few of our local banks are taking steps to make life a bit easier for people and businesses in the coming weeks and months as we do our best to fight this pandemic and global crisis. Here’s what you need to know.
At the time of publishing this blog, Standard Bank, FNB, and Nedbank had announced the particular action that they plan to take to provide financial relief during these challenging times.
Standard Bank has revealed, amongst other forms of financial relief, that it will be offering students a ‘payment holiday’ through zero per cent interest and zero fees on student loans for all students who are currently enrolled to study full time.
Nedbank has outlined its plans to support all of its clients struggling to make ends meet in light of the global crisis, and has stated that the bank is willing to assist in several ways, such as deferring payments, or part thereof, for a suitable period, as well as extending existing loan periods or extending additional credit to manage short-term cash flow shortfalls.
FNB has announced how it intends to aid small business owners over the next few months, but it has yet to put in place a plan of action to assist individual clients, and students, in particular.
More banks to follow suit?
Sources insist that it is only a matter of time before other local banks follow suit in assisting clients and students with their loans during the time of this pandemic.
Considering how many other countries around the globe, including Italy, the UK, and the USA, have been assisting individuals with resultant cash flow problems by essentially placing payments on hold and/or reducing interest on the debt, it’s almost certain that South Africa will strive to support its own citizens in a similar way. If in doubt as to what aid has been extended to you, get in touch with your bank directly to enquire how best to plot a course during these challenging times.
Here’s hoping that the action already taken will help to put your mind at ease. Instead of focusing on finances for the duration of this outbreak, focus more on staying well and abiding by the restrictions as outlined by the government and numerous health care officials. Together, we will make it through.