To enable their clients to overcome the consequences of Covid-19 as much as possible, banks have developed short-term solutions for businesses and private individuals to be applied on a case-by-case basis. Today, 20th March, the Finance Latvia Association Council and Management Board presented the opportunities developed by its banks to Minister of Finance Jānis Reirs.

Additionally, Finance Latvia management informed the minister in charge of the financial sector regarding what has already been done and planned both to ensure uninterrupted service and to limit and reduce the consequences of the state of emergency. 

To reduce the consequences of the crisis, banks have developed solutions both for loan breaks and delayed repayments, as well as temporary delays for other debt. Options for the provision of capital and liquidity reserves have also been developed. For the benefit of the health of clients and banking sector employees, a majority of banking services are available remotely.

Addressing representatives of the Association, Finance Minister Jānis Reirs emphasised:

“During the current, swiftly-changing situation, when COVID-19 has not just slowed the economy as a whole, but also impacted business, household and private cash flow, we must take care of all Latvian residents and create solutions for unusual situations. It is particularly important in states of crisis to show solidarity and responsibility, allowing all people to choose their best option. We are of one mind with the commercial banks, who have shown a readiness to act quickly and responsibly to protect clients from the direct impact of the crisis and give them a chance to recover. Today we have come to an agreement that banks will offer loan breaks—delayed payments of base loan repayments—to both private individuals and businesses. To arrange this, clients must contact their bank.”

Sanita Bajāre, Finance Latvia Association Chairwoman of the Board confirmed:

“The banks are ready for emergency measures to ensure the uninterrupted availability of financial services, maintenance of critical functions, and support for clients who have come into difficulties. Each bank has already prepared various support mechanisms which promptly and personally solve the situation for businesses and private clients impacted by the crisis. The cooperation of all parties is important to ensure secure and stable service availability as well as effective support measures. That is why the banks have committed to work closely with the government as well as business representatives to ensure the flexibility which people currently need.”

Assessing each case individually, bank are already offering their clients:

  1. Loan breaks or delayed loan repayments for both private individuals and businesses whose ability to make payments has been affected by the spread of COVID-19. Clients who wish to make use of this opportunity must contact their bank. During difficult times, all banks appreciate client initiative to begin a dialogue and reduce negative consequences in a timely manner.
  2. Most services are available remotely and in the simplest manner possible for clients. By contacting their bank electronically, clients can discover the remote availability of their selected service. If a service cannot be offered remotely, it will be available in bank branches where banks have implemented strict mechanisms to ensure the safety of clients and employees.

It is important that the current measures and support mechanisms achieve their aims. Therefore, banks are constantly staying updated on news and trends, reviewing their measures and considering the need for additional action in collaboration with government representatives if necessary.

The Association reminds clients to keep up with updates from each bank online and on social media, as well as to contact their bank electronically if they have any questions or need for services or support.

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