China’s Big State-owned Banks Offer Extensions on Home Loan Repayments for COVID-hit Borrowers

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All of China’s big state-owned banks have offered relief to home loan borrowers still adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

On the night of 7 April Agricultural Bank of China (ABC), Bank of China (BOC), Bank of Communications (BOCOM), China Construction Bank (CCB) Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) and Postal Savings Bank of China (PSBC) all announced that customers who satisfy conditions for being affected by the pandemic would be eligible to apply for extensions on their home loan repayments.

Other Chinese banks have also followed suit, including Industrial Bank Co., Ltd. and Ping An Bank.

The extensions will be for periods of anywhere between 30 days and six months, depending upon the circumstances of affected borrowers.

State-owned media reports that the credit ratings of customers who apply for extensions on home loan payments from banks will not be affected.

Chinese authorities have introduced multiple measures since the start of the pandemic to extend or delay payments on the principal and interest of loans taken out by borrowers adversely affected by COVID-19.

As early as January 2020 the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) issued the “Notice on Strengthening Banking and Insurance Financial Services Effectively Performing Work for the Prevention and Control of the Novel Coronavirus” (关于加强银行业保险业金融服务配合做好新型冠状病毒感染的肺炎疫情防控工作的通知).

The Notice called for adjusting repayment arrangements for people who have lost income sources temporarily due to the pandemic.