UAE: Banks may defer loan payments for 6 months for flood-hit residents, says Central Bank

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Picture for illustrative purposes only. ARCHIVE

The Central Bank of the UAE has issued a notice to all banks and insurance companies to allow customers to defer their loan payments for six months.

According to the UAE Central Bank, the loan deferral will apply to personal and car loans of those affected by last week’s adverse weather. Customers will not incur additional fees, interest or profit charges, nor an increase in the principal amount of the loan, the regulator said.

The Central Bank also said that insurance companies shall be responsible to compensate car owners and homeowners whose properties were damaged by the heavy rain, provided they have comprehensive insurance.

“Owners of real estate, whether homes or buildings, covered by insurance are entitled to have their property repaired from damages caused by the recent rain and weather conditions,” the Central Bank added in a statement issued on Monday (April 22).

In case of a complaint or dispute with the insurance provider, customers are urged to approach SANADAK, the financial and insurance ombudsman, to protect their insurance rights.

The UAE Central Bank’s measures follows record rainfall in the UAE on April 16, which authorities said was the highest rainfall level recorded in the country in 75 years. The rainfall brought widespread flooding that left cars and homes partly submerged, and caused operational issues at airports and public transport.

According to the National Centre of Meteorology, the amount of rainfall on April 16 in less than 24 hours was equivalent to two years’ worth of average rainfall in the UAE. ICA/Expat Media

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