The Vietnam Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Agribank) has become the first state-owned commercial lender to offer loans to property developers involved in 13 social housing projects with the signing of lending contracts between the two sides taking place in Hanoi on June 10.

The move comes on the heels of Government Resolution 02/NQ-CP on assisting low-income earners to afford home purchases, which is expected to make it easier for borrowers to buy or rent social housing.

The above-mentioned projects are worth over 6.6 trillion VND (3.1 million USD) used to build 11,292 social houses.

According to Agribank, its clients will be assisted in perfecting applications as regulated in the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV)’s Circular 11 dated May 15 and Circular 07 by the Ministry of Construction.

Only when social housing projects are approved will the two sides strike a credit deal.

Individual clients can borrow as much as 80 percent of the house value, and use their newly purchased homes as guarantees for loans of up to 15 years.

Meanwhile, property developers can receive loans worth 75 percent of their projects for a term of 5 years at an annual preferential rate of 6 percent for this year. This rate will be revised by the SBV in December next year, at a rate that is required to be below 6 percent per annum.

The disbursement of Agribank’s credit package will last until June 1, 2016.

The lender will make a marketing drive targeting homebuyers and firms which are converting their commercial property to residential use.

Other banks entrusted by the SBV to join the lending programme include the Vietnam Bank for Industry & Trade (Vietinbank), the Vietnam Bank for Foreign Trade (Vietcombank), the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) and the Mekong Housing Bank (MHB).-VNA