Coronavirus: RBI Extends Moratorium On Auto Loans By 3 More Months

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Measures will now be applicable for a total period of six months from March 1, 2020 to August 31, 2020.

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A related RBI announcement about reduction of repo rate by 40 basis points was welcomed by SIAM.

Highlights

  • Earlier moratorium announced by RBI was to expire on May 31st, 2020
  • Skipped EMIs will need to be re-paid at the end of the loan term
  • Consumer would not be classified as 'defaulter' despite skipping EMIs

In a big relief to lakhs of consumers who currently have vehicle loans, the Reserve bank has announced the extension of moratorium on monthly EMIs by another 3 months. The earlier moratorium announced by RBI was to expire on May 31, 2020 but looking at the continued liquidity crunch the consumers are facing owing to the Coronavirus pandemic, the decision to extend the moratorium was announced. Now if consumers want, they can skip their auto loan EMIs till August 31, 2020, which they'll have to repay at the end of the term loan.

Also read: Coronavirus Lockdown: Skipping Your Auto Loan EMIs May Not Be A Wise Decision

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According to RBI, demand compression and supply disruption will depress economic activity in the near future.

Interest will still continue to be accrued over these missed EMIs but the central bank did try to offer some relief there as well. In a statement RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das said,"It has been decided to permit lending institutions to convert the accumulated interest on working capital facilities over the total deferment period of 6 months into a funded interest term loan which shall be fully repaid during the course of the current financial year, ending March 31, 2021."


In addition to this a reduction of 40 basis points in repo rate was also announced. Society of Indian Automobile manufacturers (SIAM) reacted positively to the news. Rajan Wadhera, President, SIAM said,"It is a welcome step by RBI to support reduction in the cost of borrowing for traders and consumers and hence would positively impact consumer demand. We are hopeful that banks will pass on the benefit and support demand creation for discretionary products, like automobiles."

These measures will come to aid of customers both who have existing vehicle loans and those who are looking to take new loans. With the repo rate now standing at 4% it is expected that banks will offer loans to consumer at lower rates than before. With respect to the moratorium the consumers would still not be classified as 'defaulter' despite skipping installments.

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