Unicaja Banco has been promoting a set of measures since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis to support businesses and individuals to mitigate the effects of the crisis and to contribute to the economic reactivation. In particular, during the period of state of alarm (14 March – 21 June), it has approved nearly 10,000 financing transactions to businesses (9,970 transactions) for an amount of €655 million (mostly loans with ICO guarantee), as well as nearly 13,700 moratoria for the repayment of mortgages and other personal loans (specifically, 13,688 transactions).
Nearly 80% of the loans granted to businesses correspond to financing for SMEs and freelancers. The goal of Unicaja Banco has been to launch and to offer flexible payment and funding solutions for its customers, considering their specific circumstances.
Unicaja Banco has also offered, and continues to offer, funding under the guarantee line promoted by the governments of its core regions, such as Andalusia and Castilla y Leon. In Andalusia, it offers the Liquidez Garántia COVID-19 line, approved by the Junta de Andalucía, and the Agencia IDEA line, also dependent on the Andalusian government. In Castilla y Leon, it offers the line created by Iberaval and by Instituto para la Competitividad Empresarial.
The bank also implements the actions adopted by the Government, such as the moratorium in the repayment of mortgages on main residences and other loans, to meet the needs of those in a situation of vulnerability.
As reinforcement to those measures, it also offers the sectorial moratorium on mortgages and personal loans, under the sectorial agreement of the banks related to CECA, on the deferral of financing transactions of customers affected by the coronavirus crisis.
During the state of alarm, Unicaja Banco has approved nearly 13,700 (13,688) applications for mortgage and other loan moratoria for those in a situation of economic vulnerability.
Additionally, during the said period, ended on 21 June, Unicaja Banco has not charged any fee for withdrawing cash on debit at any ATM of the national territory, to reduce travel and avoid the spread of the coronavirus.
Furthermore, the contactless payment limit in cards and contactless devices has been temporarily increased from 20 to 50 euros, in order to reduce the transactions where it is necessary to enter the PIN number (this measure remains in force).
Support to individuals
Unicaja Banco has brought forward the payment of several social benefits, to contribute to mitigate the consequences of the health crisis. With regard to the advance of the payment of pensions, this measure has benefited, four times during the state of alarm, some 500,000 pensioners.
It has also brought forward on three times the payment of around 510,000 unemployment benefits, and 32,000 people affected by an ERTE (Temporary Labour Adjustment Plan) due the situation caused by the COVID-19 have benefited from this measure.
During this period, Unicaja Banco has also offered several advantages in the insurance policies that it sells to nearly 4,000 individuals and businesses (SMEs). In particular, it has accepted nearly 100% of the applications (nearly 1,000) to split the payment of life and accident premiums at no cost, and it has helped more than 3,000 familes and SMEs by improving the conditions in their policies for them to enjoy the best protection for home, auto, health, shops and SMEs.
Rental exemptions for FSV housing units, measures for shops and agreements with town halls
With a view to mitigating the economic impact of the coronavirus crisis on those in a situation of vulnerability, Unicaja Banco, during the state of alarm, has exempted from the payment of half of the rent to the holders of lease agreements of properties integrated in the Social Housing Fund (Fondo Social de Vivienda, FSV). A total of 333 lease holders have benefited from this measure. The 50% reduction in the rent of the lease agreements integrated in the FSV, falls within the exercise by Unicaja Banco of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), a social commitment present as well in the measures promoted and applied by the bank to its customers in this crisis.
Furthermore, for the rest of rental housing units that Unicaja Banco has got, the bank has applied the measures approved by the Government, such as the moratorium or the reduction in the rent for main residences. Around 70 applications for this measure, which expires on 2 July, have been approved.
A similar measure has been applied to businesses and freelancers for the rent of the premises owned by Unicaja Banco. In this case, the bank has processes nearly one hundred applications, of which more than 73% were rent discounts and the rest, moratoria.
Unicaja Banco has reached agreements with town halls¸ such as those of Salamanca, Valladolid and Leon, to provide SMEs and freelancers with access to funding with public guarantees, and to reactivate the commercial life after the impact of the health crisis.
It also supports shops through the adoption of measures as the waiver of maintenance fees for physical POS terminals, applied until 30 June and which has benefited around 15,000 shops.