The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is urging financial companies to ease the plight of their borrowers by extending other forms of assistance related to their loans.

The SEC posted on Facebook a notice for the “adoption of other debt relief measures,” which outlines ways to cushion the negative impact of the coronavirus disease on borrowers.

It said: “The Commission STRONGLY ENCOURAGES financing companies (FCs), lending companies (LCs), and microfinance-non government organizations (MF-NGOs) to adopt measures that will help ease their borrowers’ financial burden, in addition to the mandatory grace period under Sec. 4(aa) of Republic Act No. 11469 otherwise known as the Bayanihan to Heal As One Act and its Implementing Rules and Regulations.”

It recommended measures like the reduction of interest rates, implementation of loan term extension, consolidation of debt, adoption of payment holiday, offering flexible payment schedules, and lowering or even foregoing of financial charges, penalties and other fees.

FCs, LCs and MF-NGOs are also encouraged to come up with their own plans and programs that will bring “financial relief” to those who have sought loans from them. (Jojo Mangahis)