The BCRA Extended the Effectiveness of Various Measures

Within the framework of the COVID-19 pandemic and the actions taken by the Federal Executive, the BCRA has adopted some measures in the past few days in order to ensure the smooth functioning of the financial system and to make transactions more convenient for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and individuals:

1. Checks

Under Executive Order No. 544/2020, financial institutions are relieved of the obligation to close bank accounts and to impose disqualifications as set out in Law No. 25,730, Section 1, until December 31, 2020.

The BCRA issued Communication A6950 on April 1, 2020 to establish the following measures so long as the executive order remains in effect:

• To extend the period for the presentation of regular or deferred-payment checks by thirty (30) days.

• To allow for a second presentation of checks returned for insufficient funds. This does not apply to ECHEQs.

• To prohibit financial institutions from charging returned check fees.

2. ATMs

The BCRA extended, to September 30, the period during which institutions cannot charge fees on transactions (deposits, withdrawals, balance checking, etc.) made at any ATM operated in Argentina, regardless of the amount involved.

Likewise, the BCRA extended the effectiveness of the measure that set a daily withdrawal limit of ARS 15,000, at a minimum, irrespective of the financial institution and/or the ATM network involved.

These measures, which aim to make users’ transactions easier, were already in effect up to June 30.

3. Unpaid balances and late payment fees

The BCRA also extended the period during which institutions cannot charge late payment fees on instalments—including UVA loans—falling due between April 1 and September 30, 2020. The amounts due will be charged from then onwards at the applicable interest rate.

June 23, 2020.

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