The Superintendent of Banks, Alejandro Fernández W, highlighted the preponderant role played by the national financial system in facing the collapse of the economy in 2020, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, and its recovery in the year just concluded.
Fernández W said that, as a monetary policy, in such an extraordinary and surprising situation, a massive injection of liquidity was carried out into the economy to keep the payment system afloat, and reduce market interest rates, with it the economic burdens of companies and families.
He explained that thanks to these policies, in recent years, the lowest levels of interest rates, both in pesos and in dollars, have been achieved in Dominican history.
The official from the financial area added that there were also elements linked to the regulatory relaxation of the way in which loans are qualified, and to punish or not a bank for restructuring or refinancing a loan from a debtor of all kinds, both commercial, business or physical
“The message that was sent, and we also in the current administration have maintained, is that the burden must be accommodated on the fly, we have to be flexible and recognize the situation that the debtors are facing, which is not a matter of will of payment, if not that there is indeed an external situation that requires a very relevant flexibility, and in effect this was achieved, ”explained Alejandro Fernández, interviewed by Héctor Herrera Cabral in the D’AGENDA program that is broadcast every Sunday by Telesistema Canal eleven,.
He insisted that the institution he directs was consistent with the debtors, who are ultimately those who make up the assets of financial institutions.
He said that, instead, the signal that was sent, by recognizing that the numbers for 2020 would not be the most promising and representative of the reality of companies and the economy, from there, by decision of the Monetary Board, a series of flexibility measures.
The official highlighted the support given by the financial sector to tourism, one of the hardest hit by the coronavirus, by restructuring their loans due to the cash flow situation they presented during the pandemic, and was granted a grace period from 12 to 18 months, only paying interest, until reactivation was achieved.
Private commercial credit portfolio exceeds RD$740 billion
Regarding the private commercial credit portfolio of the national financial system, Fernández W said that it exceeded 740 billion pesos last year, according to preliminary figures handled by the institution he directs.
According to the data, the portfolio had a growth of 12 percent in the same period of time.
The participation of that amount is headed by Commerce and others with 25.5%, Industry and Manufacturing 14.8. Hotels and Restaurants 11.4, Construction 10.7, real estate activities 10.4, Financial Intermediation 6.4, Transportation and others 4.5, while the Agriculture sector and others 3.4, among other productive activities in the country, which also had access to bank credit.
In that same order, the interannual growth of credit was for Commerce and others of 10 percent, Manufacturing 9%, Hotels and restaurants 17%, while Construction grew by 12, Financial Intermediation 40 percent and Electricity, Gas and Water 26%.
Alejandro Fernández highlighted the intelligence that Dominicans are having, to the point of preferring credit facilities in personal loans, installments, and mortgages, instead of resorting to credit cards, which was something that he recommended prior to assuming the functions that today he performs
“But what is vehicle loans, consumer loans in general, excluding credit cards, mortgage loans, to Micro, Small and medium-sized companies, and to commerce in terms of the private sector, all are growing in real terms”, he assured. .