PM Announces Urus Programme To Assist B50 Borrowers, Applications To Begin On 15 Nov 2021
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(Image: The Star)

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob has announced the launch of the Financial Management and Resilience Programme (Urus), which is intended to assist borrowers in the B50 income group who are still struggling with financial woes. The programme is set to be implemented by the banking sector soon, with applications taking place between 15 November 2021 to 31 January 2022.

According to the prime minister, Urus will be a comprehensive loan payment support programme that is offered to those who earn a gross household income of less than RM5,800 per month. Among some of the facilities that will be offered as part of the programme include a three-month exemption on interest, reduction in instalment payments for up to 24 months, as well as reduced interest rates.

“During this period, customers with borrowings or financing and personal credit cards without guarantee can also enjoy lower interest to ease their financial burden,” said Datuk Seri Ismail in a statement, adding that the programme was drawn up between the banking sector and the Credit Counselling and Debt Management Agency (AKPK). He also stated that more details about Urus will be released by the Ministry of Finance soon.

(Image: Bernama)

Meanwhile, the Association of Banks in Malaysia (ABM), Association of Islamic Banking and Financial Institutions Malaysia (AIBIM), Association of Development Finance Institutions of Malaysia (ADFIM), and AKPK have also released a separate joint statement to shed more light on the Urus programme. They said that banks will be setting aside an estimated RM1 billion to fund the cost of the programme.

The statement further clarified that the scheme is open to individual customers who are under an existing repayment assistance programme (such as the targeted repayment assistance, PEMERKASA Plus, PEMULIH, as well as a bank’s rescheduling and restructuring programme) as of 30 September 2021. They are also required to meet certain eligibility criteria in order to apply for this programme, namely:

  • Falls under the B50 income group (household income of RM5,880 or lower, as defined by the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM))
  • Loss of employment, or reduced income of at least 50%
  • Loan is not in arrears exceeding 90 days as of the date of their application
maybank bank counters
(Image: The Star)

Additionally, applicants who are not registered recipients of Bantuan Sara Hidup (BSH) or Bantuan Prihatin Rakyat (BPR) will be required to provide evidence when applying through their respective banks. Upon successful application, AKPK will provide borrowers with a personalised financial plan that takes into account their financial circumstances and ability to repay their financial obligations.

Prior to this, Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz had revealed that the AKPK will set up a temporary assistance programme to help Malaysians who are still struggling financially after the expiry of various repayment aids provided under the PEMULIH economic package. Banks, too, had submitted a counter proposal to an earlier directive from the government to waive the interest fee for selected borrowers tapping into the ongoing six-month loan moratorium.

(Sources: The Star, Free Malaysia Today, The Edge Markets)

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