Jeremy Awori, Managing Director of Barclays Kenya, soon to be Absa, explains features of the new vertical Absa credit and debit cards to Sheila Momanyi, Manager Sarit Centre branch.
Jeremy Awori, Managing Director of Absa Bank Kenya, explains features of the new vertical Absa credit and debit cards to Sheila Momanyi, Manager Sarit Centre branch during the bank's official re-branding ceremony. The bank has restructured loans worth Sh8.3 billion Photo/ Barclays Kenya

Days after being sanctioned for irregular Forex trading, Absa Bank Kenya Plc has announced that it has restructured loans worth8.3 billion as a relief program meant to cushion its customers whose income routes have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Absa is now offering customers an initial loan repayment relief of up to three months for personal loans, mortgages, asset finance, credit cards as well as business loans.

The lender says customers can request an extension of the repayment relief period to a maximum of 12 months which will be assessed on a case by case basis. What’s more, customers can extend their credit life insurance cover for three months at no additional cost.

Customers will not incur any extra processing fees as a result of the relief. However, interest will accrue and the loan repayment period will be extended to accommodate the relief.

Absa Bank Kenya Plc

“As the world continues to grapple with the COVID-19, the economic impact of the pandemic remains a great concern for our country, businesses, and individuals. We understand that these are challenging times and we are working with our customers to support them get through these extraordinary times,” said Absa Kenya Managing Director Jeremy Awori.

“In line with this, we have reviewed our credit terms and developed various options that we believe will cushion them against the prevailing financial difficulties,” added the chief executive.

Customers with personal loans have been advised to get in touch with the bank through a specified customer service text number on or before 16 April 2020, after which they will be notified on the outcome of their application.

Scheme loans customers are being advised to contact their employers to access the loan repayment relief options available.

In the same vein, customers with business loans have been advised to get into contact with their relationship managers or call the bank’s contact centre to access the loan repayment relief options available.

The bank has also waived all access charges for the Absa Integrator, Absa’s online banking platform that enables business customers to transact in real-time. The waiver on Absa integrator charges is applicable until June 30, 2020.

Credit Card customers can either reduce their repayments to as low as 5% of the outstanding balance or pay in equal monthly installments of up to 12 months.

The bank said that it would continue to monitor the situation as it evolves and adjust its offering to provide customers with financial continuity during and beyond this pandemic.

This comes even as the Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) members continue to drop the rates on interest loans after the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) slashed its base lending rate as an initial measure to address the shock caused to Kenya’s economic system by the outbreak of the virus.

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