Banks argue there was no consultation
The Association of Banks in Fiji have expressed their dismay and disappointment in regard to the rushed passage of The Fair Reporting of Credit Act through Parliament on April 27, 2016. This Act has been passed with zero consultation with any of the stakeholders. This includes the Data Bureau itself, commercial banks, finance companies, hire purchase and credit providers and also concerningly with what appears to be no consultation with the proposed regulator, Reserve Bank of Fiji.
While this bill “clears the slate” for many people, it also clears the very good credit records of those vast majority of responsible borrowers. The inability now to be able to search a person’s credit history will greatly increase the risk levels within the personal lending market. Lenders will have little option but to increase interest rates to compensate for this increased risk. Banks have already been contacted by borrowers in arrears stating that if there is no Data Bureau, they see no need to pay back their loans. Banks will have no option but to pursue legal action through to bankruptcy to enforce payment of these loans. Processing times for loan approvals will now increase as banks ask borrowers to provide evidence of having paid off loans in the past. The industry was of the understanding that discussions were to commence on ‘positive’ credit reporting so that those who had successfully paid off loans would have this in their credit history. At this time when those affected by Cyclone Winston may be looking to borrow funds to rebuild, loans will be more difficult to obtain and interest rates higher. Feedback: email@example.com
Act requires reporting agencies to meet certain criterias
Fijians need to understand that the introduction of the Fair Reporting of Credit Act allows for Credit Reporting Agencies to be formed provided that they meet the criteria set out in the Act and its Regulations. The Act is not stopping credit reporting but regulates credit reporting so that it is done in a transparent manner.
Giving ordinary Fijians a clean slate
What’s wrong in starting on a clean slate? What’s wrong in giving the ordinary Fijian a chance? Justice? And fair play? What’s wrong in having regulated fair crediting of credit business?
If interest rates as they claim will go up because of a regulated data bureau or because of handing over of information of the data bureau than can they tell us if interest rates went down when data bureau started? Obviously it didn’t go down. It went because of other factors. Rather than moaning about it they should get on with it. Are they frightened that if it is well regulated that it will allow more professional operators to come into the market from Australia and New Zealand? Feedback: firstname.lastname@example.org
While this bill “clears the slate” for many people, it also clears the very good credit records of those vast majority of responsible borrowers