Take proactive steps, AKPK urges Malaysians

Borrowers may seek assistance from AKPK if their banks’ proposals do not meet their overall financial commitments

by NUR HANANI AZMAN / pic by HUSSEIN SHAHARUDDIN

AS THE automatic blanket moratorium comes to an end, the Credit Counselling and Debt Management Agency (AKPK) is encouraging borrowers to take proactive steps in assessing their current and future financial positions.

AKPK CEO Azaddin Ngah Tasir (Pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL/TMR)

AKPK CEO Azaddin Ngah Tasir (picture) said those who foresee difficulties in resuming their financing repayments should seek help from their respective banks once the moratorium ends.

“While the nation’s economy is showing signs of recovery, we understand that many people are still grappling with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“There are various repayment assistance options available to help customers better manage their finances by reducing monthly commitments, extending repayment schedules, and/or changing the financing terms, enabling them to adapt to this unprecedented situation,” he said in a statement yesterday.

Alternatively, Azaddin said borrowers may seek independent advice and assistance from AKPK if their banks’ proposals do not meet their overall financial commitments or if they have multiple borrowings from the banks.

“AKPK will work out possible repayment plans upon taking into consideration their overall or holistic financial commitments. In the process, the agency also provides financial counselling and education on prudent financial management.

“All this will enable borrowers to improve their productivity at work, avoid moratorium legal actions taken against them and above all, a peace of mind,” he added.

AKPK’s financial counselling will assist consumers to work out budgets that will help them manage their money and living expenses to improve their cashflow and net worth, while helping them meet their loan and credit obligations to avoid defaults on loans and foreclosures.

AKPK’s Debt Management Programme (DMP) will assist borrowers in rescheduling or restructuring their housing loans, hire purchase loans, personal loans and outstanding credit or charge card balances that are due to financial service providers under the purview of Bank Negara Malaysia.

By raising awareness and educating the public on how to manage their finances effectively, as well as providing counselling and specially tailored DMP, AKPK hoped to help curb financial-related issues faced by many Malaysian households.

AKPK provides an avenue for individual borrowers as well as potential borrowers to enhance financial discipline via financial education, financial counselling and DMP for free.

The Malaysian Reserve previously reported a total of 15,024 new sign-ups to AKPK’s DMP as of end of June, while 52,566 individuals attended AKPK’s counselling services in the first half of this year.