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Wednesday , 15 April 2020 [prisna-bing-website-translator]
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SBI to grant special loans to virus-hit borrowers

MUMBAI The country’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) has drawn up a scheme to provide additional funding to borrowers whose operations are impacted by coronavirus. The Covid-19 Emergency Credit Line (CECL) will be in force up to June 30 and will be equivalent to 10% of their working capital limit, subject to a cap of Rs 200 crore.
The CECL will be availed at a rate of 7.25% and will not have any processing fee or prepayment penalty. While SBI has been the first to launch the scheme, other public sector lenders are expected to follow suit soon.
In a circular to branches, the bank said that CECL will be in the form of a demand loan with a term of 12 months to help meet temporary liquidity mismatch arising out of Covid-19. The facility will be available to all standard accounts which do not have overdues for over 30 days on March 16. Borrowers who have availed specialised loan products for small businesses are also eligible for the facility.
The borrower can avail the sanctioned amount in one go and start instalments only after six months and complete repayments in the next six months. The borrower will, however, need to have stocks with market value enough to cover the additional limit. Industry bodies have been calling for additional funding for small business and a moratorium on loans so that borrowers are not classified as defaulters if they face liquidity problems during the period of shut down.
According to bankers the panic in the financial markets risks translating into a credit freeze as lenders turn risk-averse. Providing a special line of credit to small business will ensure that they do not default in their financial obligations and the businesses continue to function.

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