Individuals purchasing commercial houses worth 1.05 billion VND (50,000 USD) or less in urban projects that authorities have approved are entitled to financial assistance from the national real estate bailout programme.

This was under the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV)'s Circular No 32/2014/TT-NHNN issued early this week to guide lending activities to assist business and market developments.

Previously, the Government also required State-owned commercial banks to reserve at least three percent of their total outstanding loans to help low-income citizens lease or purchase social or commercial houses measuring less than 70 sq.m and priced below 15 million VND (714 USD) per sq.m.

Vietnam has been implementing a 30 trillion VND (1.43 billion USD) national real estate bailout package that has been disbursing capital since 2013 through Vietinbank, Vietcombank and BIDV, as well as Agribank and Mekong Housing Bank.

According to the latest SBV circular, package beneficiaries include civilians and armed forces servants and workers, as well as households and individuals who build social houses to serve workers and students.

Enterprises that transform their commercial housing projects into social housing projects are likewise qualified for support.

While interest rates for programme loans remain unchanged at six percent per year or lower as designated by the SBV, the maximum term that home buyers or renters may enjoy such rates has been extended from 10 to 15 years and cannot be prolonged after June 1, 2031.

For customers nationwide who build or repair their own houses, each can acquire a maximum loan of 700 million VND (33,330 USD).

The SBV is suggesting that joint-stock commercial banks join the programme and register with it for this purpose within 30 days after the circular takes effect on November 25.-VNA