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Banks Help Bushfire Victims

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The major four banks have all provided packages of assistance to consumers and communities affected by the bushfires. Each bank has pledged a minimum of $1 million in donation packages for bushfire victims.

David Lindberg, Wespac Chief Executive, Consumer Division, said the $1.5 million Bushfire Fund will offer practical help on the ground. “Urgent assistance is what is needed as many of our customers and communities are facing unprecedented devastation, uncertain futures for their homes, families, businesses and many, their livelihood. We are also committed to helping communities recover over the longer term.

Customers of Westpac whose homes were destroyed will find a mortgage paid for a whole year. The bank will also provide interest-free loans to consumers to cover the gap between insurance payouts and the cost of reconstruction, while businesses will receive low-interest loans.

Westpac says it will not foreclose any agricultural businesses in the affected areas for three years and will provide businesses with a $15,000 grant to repair damaged premises. Westpac Bank, as one of Australia’s largest employers, has a range of programmes to assist our people who help in the recovery process. It provides uncapped paid leave for voluntary emergency service staff and community counseling.

The CBA has pledged recovery grants to be worth at least $10 million. Applications are now available up to $50,000 per grant. The Bank will also match all donations made to the Australian Red Cross through the CommBank app, with the additional funds to go to the CBA Bushfire Recovery Grants Program.

While NAB would provide grants of $2,000 and be willing to commit not to foreclose existing loans for up to three years. NAB customers can defer paying back their loans for up to three years. To people whose properties have been destroyed or damaged by bushfires, the Victorian government has announced land tax and duty relief.


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