Mr. Banthoon Lamsam, Chairman Emeritus of KASIKORNBANK, announced the launch of two additional projects to benefit society. Through initiation of the “Special Stipend for Front-line Medical Personnel” program, the Kasikornthai Foundation has offered funds to boost morale and provide support for healthcare personnel and officers. This pilot project will be implemented in 45 hospitals across the five southernmost provinces where there is a high rate of COVID-19 transmission. A total of 5,083 medical personnel will each receive 4,000 Baht a month for a 3-month period.
This project is expected to help 20,000 personnel through a fund totaling 300 million Baht. Concurrently, the “Zero Interest-rate Loan to Retain SME Staff” program is also being launched to aid small SMEs with fewer than 200 employees. SME customers are invited to join the program and make contributions to the fund for maintaining employees’ income and businesses’ upkeep – with a zero interest-rate loan, which has no fees and requires no collateral, for a 10-year loan term and 1-year grace period of principal repayment. The loan limit for each SME is tied to its number of employees. Each employee will receive 8,000 Baht a month for a period of three months, with a loan limit of 1 billion Baht. More than 1,000 SME operators are now participating in this program, and it is expected to save 41,000 jobs.
Kasikornthai Foundation launches the “Special Stipend for Front-line Medical Personnel” program to offer 300 million Baht to healthcare professionals and workers in five southernmost provinces
The Kasikornthai Foundation has offered funds to support frontline health workers during the COVID-19 outbreak through the establishment of the “Special Stipend for Front-line Medical Personnel” program. The Kasikornthai Foundation has offered funds to boost morale and provide support for healthcare personnel and officers. This pilot project will be implemented in 45 hospitals across the five southernmost provinces where there is a high rate of COVID-19 transmission. A total of 5,083 medical personnel will each receive 4,000 Baht a month for a 3-month period. This project is expected to help 20,000 personnel through a fund totaling 300 million Baht, which is aimed to boost the morale of healthcare personnel and officers for their dedication and tireless work in the fight against COVID-19 in the high-risk areas.
Mr. Banthoon Lamsam, Chairman Emeritus of KASIKORNBANK (KBank) and Chairman of the Kasikornthai Foundation, said that healthcare personnel and workers are the main pillar of response in the fight against COVID-19. They work with their heart and dedication to care for the general public regardless of their race and religion. Aside from being exposed to the virus, many of them have to work in hospitals located in high-risk areas. They are dedicated to delivering essential healthcare services for the sake of their patients’ lives, while also having to take care of themselves and their families. As a tribute to these dedicated health frontliners, the Kasikornthai Foundation has granted support funds of 300 million Baht to 20,000 medical professionals; each of them will receive 4,000 Baht for three months from May to July 2020. The funds can be used as they deem necessary. Given the efficient fund distribution system of the Kasikornthai Foundation, hospital staff members and medical workers can be assured of receiving the assistance.
The “Special Stipend for Front-line Medical Personnel” program is administered by the Kasikornthai Foundation in collaboration with Provincial Public Health Offices in Songkhla, Yala, Narathiwat, Pattani and Satun, and the Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkhla University. These Provincial Public Health Offices have compiled a list of 45 hospitals in the five southernmost provinces, which are already high-risk areas and are now facing widespread viral transmission. As of April 30, there were 5,083 medical professionals and workers stationed at these hospitals who are classified as a high risk group with exposure to the viral infection, under the Ministry of Public Health’s announcement.
KBank sets aside 1 billion Baht for small SMEs to keep more than 41,000 workers under the “Zero Interest-rate Loan to Retain SME Staff” program
After the launch of the “Generous (Business) Owners – Empathetic Creditor” initiative in mid-April, KASIKORNBANK (KBank) continues to provide assistance to SME businesses. Recently, the “Zero Interest-rate Loan to Retain SME Staff” program was introduced to help small businesses with up to 200 employees so that they have funds to keep their workers and maintain business operations. Under this project, KBank has prepared 1 billion Baht in funds for zero-percent loans with a one-year grace period. It is expected that approximately 1,000 SME entrepreneurs and more than 41,000 workers will benefit from the project.
Mr. Banthoon Lamsam, Chairman Emeritus of KBank, said that due to their limited reserves, small-scale businesses have been more severely impacted by the prevailing pandemic. Their liquidity shortage has made it quite difficult for them to access funding sources. KBank has therefore established the “Zero Interest-rate Loan to Retain SME Staff” program to enable these small businesses to retain their employees. The outstanding feature of this project is to help employees earn a living for themselves and their families. Each employee will earn 8,000 Baht a month for three months, for which KBank has set aside 1 billion Baht that will be available to more than 41,000 employees. KBank is willing to lower its income in order to help the members of our society endure the crisis. If those who have give a hand to those who have not, everyone will pull through and no one will be left behind; then Thailand will certainly weather this hardship.
Only small SMEs employing fewer than 200 staff members and using KBank’s services for a number of years are eligible to join the “Zero Interest-rate Loan to Retain SME Staff” program. Such entrepreneurs must have professional integrity and a fighting spirit, and a proven ability to lead their businesses and employees to survive together. Regarding the assistance under this program, KBank will help small SME entrepreneurs partially pay expenses for all of their employees so that they can continue their operations and take care of other expenditures without having to suspend or shut down their businesses. The financial support for small SMEs to retain their employees is free of interest and all types of fees. It has a 10-year term with no collateral requirement. KBank also offers participating SMEs a one-year grace period to ensure that they have sufficient funds for wages. The amount of loan for each company depends on its number of employees. Each of its employees, however, must have income of at least 8,000 Baht per month for three months. KBank will put an examination process in place to ensure that the salary is credited to the account of each employee. A total of 1 billion Baht has been set aside for the financial support program, which should be able to assist over 1,000 companies nationwide to retain more than 41,000 employees.
In mid-April 2020, KBank introduced the “Generous (Business) Owners – Empathetic Creditor” initiative in collaboration with entrepreneurs to help low-income workers remain employed in Phuket. The project has been well-received as it has so far helped entrepreneurs retain more than 2,000 employees, or nearly 70 percent of the 3,000 employees targeted earlier. KBank has helped entrepreneurs reduce interest payments amounting to more than 60 million Baht on their existing loans with KBank, as well.