Overview of the current COVID-19 statuses in borrowers’ geographies, November 2020

16.11.2020

mintosblog

As the numbers of COVID-19 cases grow around the world, countries are reintroducing restrictions and limitations to movement and economic activity, in order to prevent the spread of the virus. As such moves continue to impact many economies, in some cases the financial capabilities of borrowers are being reduced. 

We took a look at the geographies related to borrowers of companies that offer their loans for investments on Mintos, to observe changes in moratoriums for borrowers: new developments, extensions, or status quo. 

Here you can read the moratorium overview we made earlier this year. 

Albania

In Albania, there is currently no moratorium in place for customers of financial services, and there are no new developments related to borrowers compared to the last moratorium update on Mintos.

Due to the rising number of COVID-19 related cases, the country has reintroduced restrictions similar to those from March 2020, including an overnight curfew.

Armenia

In Armenia, quarantine is in power until January 2021. 

The Armenian authorities announced that the entrance to the country is prohibited via land borders for non-citizens, with some exceptions. With the rise of the COVID-19 related cases, restrictive measures are intensified and they apply to public and social events, educational processes, and economic activities. 

Bosnia and Herzegovina 

The moratorium for loan repayments has been extended until the end of January 2021 by the Steering Board of the Banking Agency of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The country’s borders have been conditionally opened to all citizens, and entrance is available with mandatory negative COVID-19 test results. With the very high number of daily new COVID-19 infections, the country is reintroducing night-time curfews and wider limits to public and social life. 

Bulgaria

There are no changes to moratorium status compared to the previous update on Bulgaria. The state of emergency in the country has been prolonged several times, and as of today will be in effect until the end of November 2020. 

Botswana

Moratoriums that were in place in Botswana have been extended until the end of March 2021. The country will have a state of public emergency for another six months, in an attempt to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Botswana’s economy has been severely affected by the pandemic, with authorities predicting a contraction of 8.9% in 2020. 

Belarus

There are no new moratorium decisions in Belarus. Due to the current political turmoil, the general situation in the country is unstable and might affect flows in borrowers’ repayments. From the beginning of November, the Belarusian authorities have restricted border crossing for foreigners, while these restrictions do not apply to arrivals through the Minsk National Airport. 

Columbia

Columbia hasn’t imposed a moratorium for borrowers during the course of the pandemic. At the same time, it is one of the countries that reached one million COVID-19 infections. The country is open for travel, but international passengers must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test result on arrival. With limitations to social gatherings, the government relies on the individual responsibility of citizens when it comes to pandemic-related behavior in public. 

Czech Republic

There are no new developments regarding moratorium updates in the Czech Republic since the previously shared overview. As the country is seeing high numbers of daily COVID-19 cases, the Government announced a new series of lockdown measures at the end of October. Work is restricted or limited for most shops and services, with the exception of grocery stores, drugstores, and pharmacies.

Denmark

There is currently no moratorium for borrowers in Denmark. Since the surge of cases in August, the country has imposed new restrictions on activities in public spaces. The Danish parliament has passed a massive bail-out package to support the Danish economy during the Covid-19 pandemic. Besides major temporary compensation schemes for the self-employed, the support also addresses increased access to export credit schemes, increased limits for state-guaranteed lending schemes, public procurement to support businesses, state guarantee to the Danish Travel Guarantee Fund, increased access to unemployment and sickness benefits, and increased access to student loans.

Estonia

There is no moratorium for borrowers in Estonia. The country has restrictions related to preventing the spread of the virus in public places: physical distance, face masks, partially remote school attendance, etc. 

Spain 

Currently, there are no changes to moratorium status in Spain. The country is in a national state of emergency, with imposed night-time curfew across different regions of the country. The curfew that is in power now in November could be prolonged to 6 months if the infection trend doesn’t slow down in the upcoming weeks. Measures announced for the second spike of  COVID-19 in Spain include limitations to public and private gatherings, and in some regions cafes and bars are closed except for takeaway and delivery. 

Finland

There is no pandemic-related moratorium in power in Finland. The restrictions in the country are related to the dynamics of the new COVID-19 cases in the country’s regions. Overall, the government recommends face masks in public and remote work where possible. There are limits to working hours in bar and restaurant services, and there are travel restrictions and quarantine measures for different countries, based on predefined criteria. 

The United Kingdom 

There are no additional moratoriums for borrowers in the United Kingdom. With high numbers of COVID-19 related cases, many regions are under the highest tier of the COVID-19 restrictions (tier three). This means limitations to public gatherings, social contacts, and movement: people are not advised not to travel to or out of such areas except for work, education, or caring responsibilities. 

Georgia

There are no new developments regarding moratorium for borrowers in Georgia, despite the growth of new COVID-19 cases in the country. Face masks and social distancing measures are mandatory in all indoor and outdoor public spaces. 

Indonesia

There are no new developments or new moratorium measures in Indonesia. COVID-19 related regulation instructs those responsible for specific public places, workplaces, industrial areas, and tourist attractions to implement mandatory health and prevention protocols and limits to the use of space. 

Kenya

There are no new developments regarding the moratorium for borrowers in Kenya. As the country is going through a strong second wave, the curfew is prolonged until the end of November.

Kazakhstan 

There is no moratorium for borrowers in Kazakhstan. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 COVID-19 Outbreak Notice for Kazakhstan. The Kazakhstani Ministry of Health has confirmed more than 100 000 cases of COVID-19 in the country in November, with additional 40 000 cases of pneumonia that are suspected to be COVID-19. There are no curfews in place, while there are some restrictions on intercity or interstate travel. Individual regions in Kazakhstan are empowered to take additional measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 as necessary. 

Latvia

There is no moratorium for borrowers in Latvia. After a calm summer period and one of the lowest rates of COVID-19 infections in Europe, Latvia has seen a surge in new cases in autumn. The government reacted with gradual measures, from mandatory face masks in public spaces and transportation to advising remote work wherever possible and moving higher education classes online. The latest measures have introduced closing bars and restaurants for indoor service (delivery only). Except for the basic businesses – grocery stores, pharmacies, etc, there are limitations to space and working hours of many businesses. 

Lithuania

There is no news about the new moratorium extensions in Lithuania. The quarantine is prolonged to the end of November, face masks are mandatory in public spaces and remote work is recommended wherever possible. Students from 5th to 12th grade are having classes online, while all non-formal education for children and adults is either moved to remote channels or discontinued.

Moldova

There is no COVID-19 related moratorium for borrowers in Moldova. The government of Moldova will take further steps to help the country’s businesses. Currently, VAT accumulated in Moldova is being reimbursed and the salary payments are being subsidized. The country has a plan to also compensate for the interest on the loans for farmers. Through 2021 and 2022, the government will continue to make capital social investments, and investments in infrastructure, with a focus on strengthening the medical system.

Republic of North Macedonia 

By November 2020, already 2% of the total population in North Macedonia tested positive for COVID-19. The latest measures imply mandatory wearing of face masks in open and enclosed areas, the restriction of public gatherings of more than 4 people after 21:00 and the requirement of catering facilities to close by 21:00 each day. Social distancing (2 m) and hygiene recommendations remain the same.

The IMF forecasts that the economy of the Republic of North Macedonia will shrink by almost 5.5% in 2020. In September, the government announced the launch of the 4th package of measures aimed at mitigating the negative impact of the pandemic on the economy (the estimated cost of which is €470 million), and it consists of 31 measures including aid for the payment of wages for the industries that are hit the hardest by the pandemic, support loans which imply the individuals and businesses will benefit from new loans, preferential interest rates, regulated penalties, state guarantees or additional repayment postponements. It also means support of local consumption, measures on taxes and VAT, among others. 

Mexico

There is no moratorium for borrowers in Mexico. The recommendation from the government currently implies avoidance of public places with more than 10 people. In case the number of hospitalizations continues to increase, Mexico will be looking into a new set of movement restrictions.

Namibia

There are no new developments regarding the moratorium for borrowers in Namibia. The country plans to continue gradually opening its borders to stimulate and revive the national economy, but the government plans to do this on a reciprocal basis with other countries.

The Philippines 

Moratorium in the Philippines is prolonged. The Central Bank of Philippines ordered all banks and financial institutions under its jurisdiction to implement a 60-day moratorium for payments of all existing loans, current, and outstanding, due by or on 31 December 2020. Institutions will not charge their borrowers any interests, penalties, fees, or any other charges during the mandatory grace period. 

Poland

When it comes to moratorium status in Poland, the “Anti-Crisis Shield 4.0” is still effective. This act supports individuals who lost jobs after March 2020 and enables them to request the suspension of their credit payments for a total period of 3 months, without accruing interest or other fees. As the country is witnessing a surge of new COVID-19 infections, the government announced a series of measures in Warsaw and other major cities that are now considered ”red zones”, including mandatory face masks. High schools and higher education institutions in the red zones are having classes remotely. There are limits to working hours in services, and strict restrictions on privately organized events. 

Romania 

There are no changes or new developments when it comes to the moratorium for borrowers in Romania. The country has had a continually high number of COVID-19 cases throughout the last few months and it’s currently in a state of “soft lockdown”. All schools are closed for on-site classes, and work of indoor services and businesses like restaurants, cafes, theatres, and cinemas is limited or restricted, with mandatory mask-wearing in all public spaces.

Russia

There is no new moratorium for borrowers in Russia. The country is having a high daily number of COVID-19 cases, so all public entertainment activities are suspended, while bars close at 23:00. The government recommends mask-wearing and advises limitations of movement for people older than 65 years.  

Turkey 

There are no changes or new extensions of the moratorium in Turkey. Already since early autumn, face masks have been obligatory everywhere in public, at all times in all 81 Turkish provinces. The president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced that entertainment venues and businesses across the country will have to close by 22:00, and encouraged flexible working hours across businesses in private and public sectors.

Ukraine 

There are no new developments regarding the moratorium for borrowers in Ukraine. The country’s government has introduced a “weekend quarantine” through the second half of November 2020, which means that from midnight Friday/Saturday to midnight Sunday/Monday, only grocery stores, pharmacies, transport, gas stations, and veterinary pharmacies are allowed to work. Catering services can work only as takeaways. 

Vietnam

The total number of COVID-19 cases in Vietnam is quite low. Vietnam and Japan have agreed to lift mandatory quarantine for short-term visits for business people and officials in November. Despite the pandemic, the economy of Vietnam has recorded a growth rate of 2.12% in the first nine months of 2020. This is still low compared to the same period in the years from 2011 to 2020. 

Kosovo

There is no moratorium on borrower repayments in Kosovo, although the country is having a growing number of COVID-19 related mortality and infection cases. Starting 13 November, the strict curfew in cities begins – lasting from 19:00 to 05:00 until further notice.

South Africa

There is no moratorium on borrowers’ repayments in South Africa. The country is in the second lockdown, with thousands of new daily infections across the country. In an address letter to the nation by the country’s president Cyril Ramaphosa, he asked the nation for patience in the times to come. In order to ensure that all the necessary prevention measures are in place, based on the Disaster Management Act, the government has extended the National State of Disaster to the 15th of December 2020.

Zambia

There is no moratorium for borrowers in Zambia. Currently, the country is on the brink of defaulting on its foreign debt after it missed a payment of more than USD 40 million, and after the expiration of the grace period, Zambia will be the first African country to default on sovereign debt since the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has aggravated the pre-existing external debt load of USD 12 billion, putting an additional burden on health services, further depressing weak economic activity.

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