Financial and business news from Bulgaria

Russian Central Bank directs funds to small and medium-sized companies

The Russian Central Bank (RCB) said today it would direct up to 150 billion rubles ($1.9 billion) to small and medium-sized companies to ensure they could seamlessly pay their employees' salaries, Reuters reported as quoted by BTA.
The central bank will also provide credits to commercial banks at an interest rate of 4 percent annually to secure payroll payments. Russia is preparing to shut down much of its companies for the week-long recess proposed earlier this week by President Vladimir Putin as a measure against the spread of COVID-19.

The head of state also announced a package of measures to increase social spending to support families and companies affected by the slowdown in the economy.

Russian State Development Bank VEB informed today that it will provide guarantees for a total of 100 billion rubles for banks to support small and medium-sized enterprises with loans.

The RCB expands the scope of the instruments it uses to ensure financial stability against the background of increasing economic risks associated with low oil prices, the cost of the ruble to a four-year minimum and the coronavirus pandemic.

To support market liquidity, the central bank will offer 500 billion rubles in repo operations, accounting for non-working days between March 30 and April 3, the regulator announced today.

Banks are advised to quickly restructure their foreign currency loans, with the RCBs promising incentives to this end.

RCB Governor Elvira Nabiullina said credit restructuring measures due to the coronavirus could affect a quarter of the corporate loan portfolio. /