Cambodia’s Lenders Suspend Loan Principle, Interest Collection Amid Pandemic
Two associations representing Cambodia’s microfinance institutions (MFIs) and banks issued a joint statement Wednesday agreeing to grant borrowers a reprieve from repayment of loans and interest amid the country’s latest and deadliest outbreak of the coronavirus.
The Cambodia Microfinance Association (CMA) and the Association of Banks in Cambodia (ABC) made the announcement a day after more than 100 NGOs called on Cambodia’s government to direct MFIs and lenders to suspend debt and interest collection for at least three months to allow borrowers the ability to shelter at home as the country struggles to contain a viral spread first discovered in late February.
Cambodia, which had largely remained unscathed by the coronavirus in 2020, registered its first death from COVID-19—the disease caused by the virus—last month, a year to the day that that the World Health Organization labeled it a pandemic. Since then, 22 people have died, and Cambodia’s caseload has reached more than 2,900 people.
photo courtesy of aaron gilson.