20 Feb 2014

Fiji's Reserve Bank urged to review fees and charges

11:47 am on 20 February 2014

The Consumer Council of Fiji is urging the Reserve Bank of Fiji to review financial and banking sector fees and charges.

Fiji Times Online reports that this comes after a recent historic court ruling in Australia, where the Australian Federal Court found ANZ Bank in Australia had charged its consumers what it called exorbitant late payment fees on credit cards.

In a statement, the council CEO, Premila Kumar, says the class action sought to prove ANZ's honour, dishonour, late and non-payment and over-limit fees were unfair penalties that did not reflect the true cost to the bank.

Mrs Kumar says the landmark case sets the precedent for consumers in Fiji to seek the commercial banks operating in the country to charge reasonable credit card fees and charges.

Accordingly, the council is calling on the RBF and the financial sector to do the right thing by reviewing and revising their fees and charges.

The court had found that ANZ was charging Australian consumers a 10 to 18 US dollar fee when the true cost to the bank ranged from 26 US cents to 2.95 US.