Advertorials | Sep 13,2021
Apr 3 , 2020
Executives at Zemen Bank took the banking industry by surprise, cutting interest on commercial loans for borrowers in the horticulture industry to zero. The new rate applies to loans and advances taken for the period between April 2, and June 30, 2020.
The horticulture industry has been the hardest hit due to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), which impacted export freeze. It incurred 11 million dollars in losses in the last two weeks of March and faces the prospect of laying off up to 150,000 people.
This has affected Zemen Bank more than other commercial banks, since the share of this industry in its loans portfolio is higher from others, according to people close to the industry. Zemen Bank has 7.8 billion Br in outstanding loans, of which 6.5pc was advanced to companies in the horticulture industry.
In making the new adjustments, Zemen Bank may use the liquidity boost it received from the central bank last week. The administration of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has decided to release 15 billion Br in cash for commercial banks from the account the banks have paid for one year and three months to buy the mandatory 27pc bond that would have been paid back between April 2020 to June 2021.
"We believe this will help the industry to recover and resume operations," Dereje Zebene, president of Zemen, said during a press conference held this morning at the Intercontinental Addis Hotel.
Dereje was accompanied by Zelalem Mesele, president of the Ethiopian Horticulture Producer Exporters' Association.
Zemen's move is a huge support for the industry, which is currently operating with only 10pc to 15pc of its capacity, said Zelalem.
"It'll help the companies to continue paying their employees and buy fertilisers and chemicals to resume operations," he told Fortune.
To lessen the burden on the exporters, the Bank has removed 75pc in commission fee exporters pay to extend the import period. It also committed the 25pc commission fees it collected, amounting to 800,000 Br, to the Ministry of Health to be used for an initiative to protect the safety of the professionals in the front line of the fight against the virus.
The Bank also increased its one-time ATM cash withdrawal limit to 12,000 Br and entirely removed transaction fees paid on withdrawals.
The Bank has also contributed a five-million-Birr donation for the national fund that is mobilising financial and non-financial aid for the emergency preparedness of Coronavirus.
This story is edited to add a comment from Zelalem Mesele, president of the Ethiopian Horticulture Producer Exporters' Association and data about the bank's loan portfolio.
PUBLISHED ON Apr 03,2020 [ VOL 21 , NO 1040]
Advertorials | Sep 13,2021
Agenda | Mar 09,2019
My Opinion | Jul 30,2022
Fortune News | Sep 14,2020
Radar | Aug 21,2021
Covid-19 | Mar 31,2020
Agenda | Sep 04,2021
Radar | Dec 04,2021
Fortune News | Dec 07,2019
Fortune News | Mar 12,2022
Dec 24 , 2022
Biniam Mikru heads the department of cabinet affairs under Mayor Adanech Abiebie. But...
Jul 2 , 2022 . By RUTH TAYE
On a rainy afternoon last week, a coffee processing facility in the capital's Akaki-Qality District was abuzz with activ...
Nov 27 , 2021
Against my will, I have witnessed the most terrible defeat of reason and the most sa...
Nov 13 , 2021
Plans and reality do not always gel. They rarely do in a fast-moving world. Every act...
Leaders of the National Election Board are in a charm offensive mood, of a sort. Last week, they organised a rare tour for members of the me...
When the country's most senior diplomats and envoys return back to their posts after two-week debriefings, they leave behind a point or two...
Nov 25 , 2023
Ethiopia's quest to develop a functioning capital market is a demanding yet not unach...
Nov 18 , 2023
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) has made a fervent call for landlocked Ethiopia to ga...
Nov 11 , 2023
In November last year, a ray of hope pierced the gloomy skies of Ethiopia as the Pret...
Nov 4 , 2023
In the corridors of economic policy-making, a quote often attributed to Albert Einste...
Or see contact page