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Measures to relieve the impact of the novel Coronavirus

Measures to relieve the impact of the novel Coronavirus

Analysis of key relief measures introduced by banks in Hong Kong to help customers

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The outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) poses an additional challenge to Hong Kong’s economy which is already in a technical recession following the social unrest in 2019. The COVID-19 epidemic has caused adverse impacts on the financial conditions of businesses and borrowers in the city, with the Government announcing its first budget deficit in 15 years.

On 26 February 2020, the Financial Secretary announced in the 2020-21 Budget that the Government will provide a full guarantee on loans introduced by HKMC Insurance Limited (HKMCI) under the SME Financing Guarantee Scheme (SFGS) of HKD 20 billion to ease the operational burden of SMEs). In addition to relief measures for SMEs, all six domestic systematically important authorized institutions (D-SIBs) and 13 other locally incorporated authorized institutions (AIs) in Hong Kong have rolled out temporary relief measures for retail and corporate customers, subsequent to the issuance of a circular by the HKMA on 6 February 2020, where the regulator encouraged AIs to adopt a sympathetic stance in dealing with customers facing financial stress due to the epidemic.

This publication analyses the key relief measures introduced by banks in Hong Kong to help customers.

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