Kenyans Celebrate After CBK Issues New Directive to Mobile Loan Lenders


The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has published new regulations one of which has banned mobile loan lenders from calling customers and sending threatening messages to defaulting customers. 

The new regulations were published on Thursday, December 23, by CBK which has declared war on digital loan providers who are not regulated.  

The CBK (Digital Credit Providers) Regulations, 2021 are awaiting input from stakeholders before they can be affected after January 21. 

The new law has banned lenders from using abusive and obscene words when addressing customers – or harassing them in anyway just because they owe them money.

The CBK also intends to limit interest recoverable from non-performing loans (NPLs). 

The law demands that the maximum interest which can be recovered from a defaulting client must not be more that the principal amount owed when the client owes when the loan becomes non-performing.

Digital lenders will also reveal to the borrower all charges and fees, interest rate to be charged, and the total cost of credit, the dates when all charges become payable as well as the customer complaint handling procedures.

In what seems to be a refreshing move – digital lenders will be allowed to list borrowers with Credit Reference Bureaus (CRBs) but must inform borrowers of the planned listing at least 30 days prior, and the amount in question must exceed Ksh1,000.

The CBK has directed that all unregulated digital credit providers provide their business details by January 21, 2022.

The credit providers will have six months from the publication of the final regulations to apply for licensing with the CBK.

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