Consumers Association of Malawi (Cama) has called out commercial banks, accusing them of leaving out individual consumers and small businesses from being part of the three-month debt relief program.
Months ago, the Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) signed an agreement with banks to offer a three months moratorium to consumers on a case by case basis to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on loan repayment. However, Cama executive director John Kapito said that the association’s findings indicate that the banks did not consider small businesses and consumers to benefit from the moratorium.
Earlier this month, commercial banks had raised their reference rates by at least 1%, as revealed in statements by NBS Bank, FDH Bank, National Bank of Malawi, Ecobank and more. The development will see the respective banks’ borrowers paying 1% more in interest on their loans following the increase in reference rates. On the other hand, the Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI) said it expects an increase in domestic borrowing fueled by unexpected expenditures on Coronavirus.