The banking flexibility and the benefit of Panama Solidario, seek to provide economic relief to people affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The President of the Republic of Panama , Laurentino Cortizo, announced that the Panama Solidario Plan that will run until December 31, 2021, as well as the extension of bank flexibility that was scheduled to end on June 30.
Cortizo explained that it is a new Panama Solidarity Plan, which seeks to continue providing necessary relief to those who still need it, and the beneficiaries must provide a community social service or receive personal training at Inadeh.
"In this way, the new Panama Solidarity Plan encourages the personal improvement of the beneficiaries with opportunities for training and, on the other hand, encourages citizen participation in the search for solutions to the problems of their communities, contributing to the economic recovery of the country" , he detailed.
The Panama Solidario assistance program, made up of food bags, physical vouchers and the Digital Voucher, was created with the intention of providing economic relief to people affected by the COVID
Initially, the beneficiaries were approximately 1 million 350 thousand families. As the economy reactivated, the number of beneficiaries at the national level has been reduced.
This measure of reduction in the number of beneficiaries is due to the fact that in recent months, thousands of employment contracts have been reactivated in Panama.
Flexibility for payment of bank commitments
On the other hand, President Cortizo announced that the Superintendency of Banks established guidelines to expand support to bank clients and achieve flexibility in the payment of loans from debtors with income affected by the pandemic.
Cortizo explained that to access this payment flexibility, the affected people must approach their bank, support their economic situation and reach an agreement before September 30, 2021.
“For example, if you have a 10,000 loan with a monthly payment of 300 and you can only pay 150 balboas, or if you cannot pay your loan and credit card due to lack of income, in both examples, it is important approach your bank, support your financial situation and reach an agreement with the bank before September 30, "he said.
Cortizo argued that "if you do not reach your bank, the bank assumes that you can pay, and if you approach your bank and formalize an agreement, you will not lose your house, your car or any other guarantee."
He added that depending on the economic reality of each person, the payment agreement and a possible grace period may be extended beyond December 31, 2021.
He stressed that economic recovery is not possible without the support of loans provided by Panamanian banks.
"Bank loans are essential for economic recovery and job creation," he warned.
The banking flexibility in Panama, applicable in banks, finance companies and cooperatives, was announced as a relief measure by Cortizo in July 2020 in the face of the economic crisis caused by the pandemic.
This measure is aimed at people whose employment contract has been suspended, independent workers and merchants whose activity has been affected by the health measures caused by COVID
Bank flexibility does not represent the elimination of the financial obligations or commitments that citizens have with these entities, but rather a period of suspension of payment of these debts. It is extensive in residential, personal, auto mortgage loans, credit cards, loans to small and medium businesses, commercial loans, in addition to loans granted to the transportation and agricultural sectors.