Fin Min to set up counters to give advice on informal debts

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BANGKOK, 9 September 2011  – The Ministry of Finance is planning to open special counters at state-owned banks for giving people advice concerning informal debts while setting aside 1 million THB for each village fund to ease debt problems. 

Finance Minister Thirachai Phuvanatnaranubala disclosed that the Ministry was intent on solving informal debt problems by allocating 1 million THB to each of the 70,000 village funds nationwide in order to be used as assistance for local debtors. During the previous government, 1.1 million people were registered with the village fund program with a combined debt value of 120 billion THB.

However, it has been discovered that only 500,000 registrants are actually troubled by informal debts while the true debt value is 67 billion THB. So far, the Finance Ministry has compensated lenders with over 44 billion THB in order to transfer the due amounts into the formal system.

Meanwhile, Mr Thirachai stated that all branches of the government-run Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives and the Government Savings Bank would soon have counters specifically dedicated to providing advice for people with informal debts.