HKMA published a statement that the HKMC Insurance Limited (HKMCI) announced that, the Special 100% Loan Guarantee under the SME Financing Guarantee Scheme (SFGS) will start receiving applications from April 20, 2020. HKMCI welcomes all lenders under the SFGS to participate in the Special 100% Loan Guarantee and the lenders that will receive applications are Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited, Bank of Communications (Hong Kong) Limited, Chong Hing Bank Limited, DBS Bank (Hong Kong) Limited, Hang Seng Bank Limited, Nanyang Commercial Bank, Ltd., OCBC Wing Hang Bank Limited, Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) Limited, The Bank of East Asia, Limited and The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited. In addition to this, some other lenders have indicated their interest in participation.
The Special 100% Loan Guarantee is applicable to all sectors and was announced on April 03, 2020 to alleviate the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier, HKMA had also outlined the treatment of these loans under the Banking (Exposure Limits) Rules (BELR) and the Banking (Capital) Rules (BCR). The loans under this scheme will be fully guaranteed by the government. Eligible enterprises should have been operating for at least three months as at end-December 2019 and have suffered at least a 30% decline in sales turnover in any month since February 2020 compared with the monthly average of any quarter in 2019. An interest rate of the Prime Rate minus 2.5% per annum (that is, current interest rate at 2.75%) will be charged. All guarantee fee will be waived. The maximum amount of the loan per enterprise is the total amount of employee wages and rents for six months, or HKD 2 million, whichever is lower. Enterprises may also apply for an optional principal moratorium for the first 6 months, to alleviate instant burden on repayment. Subject to approval of funding by the Finance Committee of the Legislative Council, the maximum loan amount per enterprise will be increased to HKD 4 million and the principal moratorium arrangement will be extended to the first 12 months.
Keywords: Asia Pacific, Hong Kong, Banking, COVID-19, SME, HKCMI, Guarantee Scheme, SFGS, Capital Adequacy, List of Banks, Credit Risk, HKMA
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