MTUC calls on Finance Ministry and BNM to extend loan moratorium

Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) logo

By Adrian Lim

KUCHING, July 4: The Malaysian Trade Union Congress (MTUC) is calling on the Finance Ministry and Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) to further extend the loan moratorium period by another six months.

Its secretary general J. Solomon in a press statement today said extending the loan moratorium by another six months will ease the financial burden and cash flow of low income workers to service their housing and car loans interests.

“MTUC strongly urges the Finance Ministry and BNM to pull its weight in ensuring banks extend the moratorium by at least another six months, especially for the targeted group of workers who are still unable to service the loans.

“This would include many of the 800,000 workers who lost their jobs until April this year and thousands more who were forced to take deep pay cuts or go on unpaid leave by their employers.

“There should not be any doubt on the part of the government, especially the Finance Ministry and BNM (to call banks to extend the loan moratorium), as a large number of the workforce are far from ready to resume servicing their (interest for their) car and housing loans,” he said in a statement.

He opined that if the banks and financial institutions start to collect interest from borrowers, many of the low income working class might have difficulties to repay their interest on borrowings which could lead to default in loans in the future.

Thus, Solomon urges the Finance Ministry and BNM to reconsider its decision of not extending the loan moratorium.

He believed extending the loan moratorium will assist the B40, M40 income groups, as well as workers who have lost their jobs irrespective of their salary scale.

Solomon noted extending loan moratorium for another six months will also assist companies with loan facilities who were struggling to keep afloat during the Covid-19 pandemic.

He asserted that earnings for banks and banking assets have remained strong and stable and thus they are able to delay their collection of interest from borrowers.

Solomon added extending the loan moratorium period will also provide a temporary relief to low income workers besides assisting those who were laid off and endured pay cuts to have more time to repay the interest on their borrowings.—DayakDaily