RBC baranch Independence Square, Port-of-Spain.

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RBC Royal Bank of T&T Ltd (RBC T&T)has revealed that it will be temporarily closing two additional branches due to COVID-19.

On the 16th April, the bank’s filing was updated on the T&T Securities and Exchange (TTSEC) website, where it noted the “temporary closure of two (2) Bank Branches”—the San Juan and Princes Town Branches.

RBC T&T noted that San Juan customers would be directed to the Independence Square Branch and the Princes Town customers would be facilitated at the Branch located at Gulf City Mall.

RBC indicated that this would remain in effect “until such a time RBC Royal Bank (Trinidad and Tobago) Ltd deems that COVID-19 is no longer a threat to the health and safety of our employees and clients.”

Last month the bank also announced the temporary closure of its branches in Marabella, Trincity and Point Lisas making it five closures thus far, due to the coronavirus.

As a result of the filing, Guardian Media Ltd (GML) sent the following questions to Richard Downie, Regional Operating Officer, High Net Worth Clients and T&T.

1) What happens to the employees of the branches that are temporarily closed? And are these employees unemployed or redeployed?

2) If these employees are not unemployed or redeployed and are simply at home until the branches are operational once again—will they be required to do any kind of work from home? Will these employees still be receiving their full monthly salaries and will RBC have to cut staff in the midst of the current crisis?

In his response, Downie indicated that RBC employees who work at the branches identified for temporary closure will continue to support our operations by being redeployed to nearby branches.

He indicated that these employees would be supporting clients over the phone from other RBC locations, fulfilling back-office functions, or working on other projects.

Downie added, “We do not anticipate any COVID-19-related job losses at RBC this year.”