Standard Chartered Bank Kenya #ticker:SCBK will on Friday close eight branches due to Covid-19, which has reduced business activities on extended government restrictions on mass gathering.
The bank has informed its customers that branches on Koinange Street and Harambee Avenue, those at T-Mall, Two Rivers and Ruaraka/Garden City malls, as well as UpperHill, JKIA and Maritime will be shut for three months effective May 1.
The temporary closure comes at a time banks have also been forced to cut weekday operating time by one hour in the wake of coronavirus pandemic that saw government enforce 7pm to 5am daily curfew.
“As we play our part in minimising the spread of the Covid-19, effective 1st May, we will temporarily close these branches for three months,” said StanChart in a message to customers on Tuesday.
The lender becomes the second to close branches after NCBA #ticker:NCBA did so on April 1, shutting eight branches in Changamwe, Galleria, Eldoret, Junction Mall, Thika Road Mall, Hilton, Machakos and Meru.
Queues in banking halls have reduced in line with fewer business activities and social-distancing measures that have seen lenders encourage use of alternative channels such as mobile and online banking.
Last month, banks removed transaction costs for customers moving money between their mobile wallets and bank accounts after an agreement with Central Bank of Kenya and telecoms firms.
Many lenders have also staggered staff shifts to decongest work places and reduce risks of coronavirus infections.
Kenya had 363 confirmed cases of Covid-19 by Monday after eight more people tested positive. The virus has infected over three million people globally, killing over 200,000.
StanChart recently announced a three-month repayment break on personal loans and mortgages to its customers to cushion them against the economic hit from coronavirus.
The lender further gave mortgage customers an option for a six-month window of paying interest only instead of servicing together with principal sum.
StanChart also offered a window for extension of loan or mortgage repayment for up to 12 months.
By Business Daily.