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Mon 23 Mar 2020 02:10 PM

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From loan repayment holidays to credit card fees: how the new Dubai bank measures will impact you

The measures to help customers will come into effect from April 1 and run until June 30

From loan repayment holidays to credit card fees: how the new Dubai bank measures will impact you

The banks involved include Emirates NBD, Dubai Islamic Bank, Emirates Islamic, Mashreq and Commercial Bank of Dubai. Image: Getty Images

Dubai’s main banks have announced measures to support customers affected by the economic impact of the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak, according to a statement issued through the WAM state news agency.

The banks taking part include Emirates NBD, Dubai Islamic Bank, Emirates Islamic, Mashreq and Commercial Bank of Dubai.

The measures will come into effect from April 1 and run until June 30.

Below is a guide to how this will help bank customers:

  • Retail loan customers who have been placed on unpaid leave by their employers can approach the bank for repayment holiday of up to three months with zero interest and fees.
  • Customers who have availed personal loans, auto loans or mortgages can apply for a one-month repayment holiday with zero fees.
  • All first-time home buyers can benefit from a 5 percent increase in the Loan-to-Value ratio (LTV) and full waiver of processing fees (up to 85 percent for UAE Nationals and up to 80 percent for expatriates).
  • A refund of charges on cash withdrawals using debit cards at all ATMs of other banks across the UAE.
  • Credit card customers can benefit from interest-free instalment plans for all school fee payments as well as grocery purchases with no processing fees for up to six months. This is in addition to existing low interest instalment plans already in place.
  • Customers who may need to cancel their travel bookings purchased on their credit and debit cards will receive a refund of the foreign currency transaction fees charged by the bank.
  • Customers using credit cards for cash withdrawals will be allowed 50 percent reduction in the cash advance charges.
  • Credit cardholders will not be charged for balance transfers.
  • Debt consolidation solutions can be provided upon request.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of Emirates NBD said: "We recognise the need to protect those most vulnerable and are committed to lending a helping hand during this uncertain time."

"We would like to reassure our customers that they can continue to bank with us safely through our pioneering digital banking solutions. I am confident that the measures we have put in place, combined with our proven expertise in digital banking, financial strength and liquidity will help us continue delivering on our promise of superior customer service during this extraordinary time," he added.

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