3 Apr 2012

Cooks to analyse high cost of borrowing

2:26 pm on 3 April 2012

The Cook Islands Minister of Finance says a banking sector review will include an analysis of why interest rates are so high compared with New Zealand.

The review, which was called for following last year's economic summit, is due to get underway in May when New Zealand banker Sam Knowles begins an assessment.

The Minister, Mark Brown, says there has been particular concern at the high cost of capital and interest, which are seen as barriers to economic growth.

He says the government wants to see if it can broaden the lending options to the market.

"So that we have a much more competitive lending environment. And also look at our own country's bank, the Bank of the Cook Islands. What options that institution would play if we were to look at implementing any changes that would make the access to capital cheaper to our local businesses, our local borrowers."