March 5, 2020 / 12:12 PM / in a month

UPDATE 1-Bahrain c.bank urges banks to ease debt terms, fees due to coronavirus - circular

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DUBAI, March 5 (Reuters) - Bahrain’s central bank on Thursday urged banks and financing companies to consider re-scheduling or granting deferrals on credit installments in light of the coronavirus outbreak, according to a circular seen by Reuters.

It also urged the financial institutions to reduce profit and interest rates, fees and commissions or other measures for customers affected by the outbreak, the central bank said in the circular.

On Saturday, the United Arab Emirates’ central bank advised banks to take measures to mitigate the economic effects of the coronavirus outbreak, including rescheduling loans and reducing fees and commissions.

Bahrain has reported 55 confirmed cases of the new coronavrius, while the UAE has reported at least 27 cases. The other Gulf countries have all reported cases, many of which came from Iran, which is one of the countries worst-hit by the virus.

In Iran, 15 more people died in the past 24 hours, bringing the total deaths to 107 out of 3,513 confirmed cases, up by 591 from the day before.

Reporting by Saeed Azhar; Writing by Yousef Saba; Editing by Toby Chopra, William Maclean

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