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Will not charge interest on deferred student loans: BML

Shahudha Mohamed
01 April 2020, MVT 10:01
Minister of Higher Education Dr Ibrahim Hassan and BML's CEO and Managing Director Tim Sawyer. PHOTO: BML
Shahudha Mohamed
01 April 2020, MVT 10:01

Bank of Maldives (BML) clarified on Monday night that interest will not be charged for the six month deferral period on higher education student loans.

In a statement released by the bank, BML stated that student loans and educational assistance loans would be postponed for the next six months.

This will extend the entire loan repayment period by six months, but will not result in additional changes made with the upcoming monthly payment amounts.

Moreover, the bank noted that students were not required to submit an application to defer their payments, as the bank will make all the arrangements for this service.

Over 4,000 students are currently paying off their student loans.

In addition to deferring the student loans, BML has also offered moratoriums for all loans issued by the bank. However, for this service, customers must submit applications seeking to postpone their loan payments.

Unlike the student loans, bank-issued loans will rack up interest during the six month moratorium period, which will then be added to the outstanding loan amount and spread out over the remaining loan repayment period.

As the country's economy is being severely affected by the loss of revenue in the tourism sector, President Solih noted that the government would help those in need via loan schemes and moratoriums.

Experts estimate that the global economy may continue to take even more hits as COVID-19 continues to spread at an alarming rate around the globe.

The World Health Organization has classified the spread of COVID-19 as a global pandemic. The novel coronavirus has infected more than 787,231 and claimed over 37,843 lives around the world. However, out of those infected, more than 165,933 have recovered.

Maldives now records 18 confirmed and five active cases of COVID-19, with a total of 13 recoveries. Despite the three confirmed cases of Maldivians, no local to local transmissions are recorded.