The UAE said on Sunday it will settle defaulted loans owed by its by citizens, up to AED5m ($1.36m) each in the second such move by the government this year.
The order from UAE president, Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahayan, will also extend to those who are in jail, pending trial, convicted over their outstanding, state news agency WAM reported.
Citizens who agreed installment payments with the courts will also see their debt paid, it added.
The number of Emiratis covered by the presidential decree is 368, whose defaulting debts total about AED568m. The number of prisoners is 60 with owed debts totalling about AED68.8m.
In January, Sheikh Khalifa made a similar order covering non-performing loans of citizens whose debt did not exceed AED2bn.
In March, The UAE’s central bank directed lenders in the Gulf state to help reduce the debt burden of UAE nationals, with some bankers saying banks may have to write off certain personal loans.
The central bank, after a review of personal loans, found that UAE nationals were paying high repayment installments, it said in a statement.
It did not specify how the burden should be reduced.
Last November, the UAE set up a AED10bn ($2.7bn) fund to help pay low-income citizens’ debts and announced plans to raise wages of some state employees, which may support its economy but also increase the fiscal burden.
The UAE, a federation of seven emirates established in 1971 and one of the top five world oil exporters, enjoys one of the world’s highest per capita incomes of around $48,600.