Botswana cuts rates, capital ratios for commercial banks in coronavirus response


GABORONE (Reuters) – Botswana’s central bank on Thursday slashed the benchmark policy rate by 50 basis points to 4.25% in a raft of interventions aimed at cushioning the economic impact of the coronavirus by easing of borrowing costs across the board.

The bank’s monetary policy committee also announced a drop in the prudential capital adequacy ratio for commercial banks, to 12.5% from 15%.

“The reduction of primary reserve requirements will free up 1.6 billion pula which will be used by banks to finance economic activity,” Bank of Botswana Governor Moses Pelaelo said.

Reporting by Brian Benzna, Writing by Mfuneko Toyana; Editing by Alison Williams

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