(Ecofin Agency) - Standard Bank Group, which owns 60.18% of stake in its subsidiary Standard Bank Malawi, and other minority shareholders of the subsidiary will receive 7.1 billion Malawian Kwacha (about $9.6 million) in dividends for the financial year 2019. Despite the current health crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic, the country’s Central Bank did not oppose banks’ decision to distribute dividends.
However, the distribution of dividends is subject to approval by the Board of Directors of the Malawi bank, which will meet at the Annual General Meeting on 26 June. Payment is expected by the end of July 2020. As a reminder, shareholders have already received the first part of this dividend in September 2019 (2.1 billion kwachas).
In Malawi, the banking sector regulator has not yet decided on the suspension or postponement of dividend payments by banks.
Like several central banks in Africa, the Reserve Bank of Malawi has put in place measures to support individuals and private enterprises in these difficult times. These measures include the restructuring of loans to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and the deferral of loan maturities to individuals and private enterprises for three months.