Response to the Chancellor’s announcement of changes to the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans Scheme (CBILS)

The Lending Standards Board (LSB) welcomes the changes HM Treasury has announced to the CBILS to support the swift provision of finance to SMEs and the launch of the Bounce Back Loan scheme (BBL).  At a time where economic uncertainty is causing great anxiety, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, moves are required by many, including regulators and banks, to support UK businesses.

We recognise the need for changes to the criteria lenders must apply when considering the provision of finance under this scheme. The Standards of Lending Practice for business customers will be updated to reflect any amendments required to ensure that they do not prohibit participating firms from meeting the requirements of the scheme, within the coming days. Firms meeting the requirements of CBILS in relation to the assessment of credit and business viability will be acknowledged as adhering to the Standards. Affordability checks for non-CBILS lending remain a requirement under the Standards of Lending Practice for business customers and Standards of Lending Practice for business customers – asset finance.

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