THE Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has committed to closely monitoring bank charges in view of curbing unnecessarily high costs being passed down to the banking public and in the process adversely discouraging the use of formal financial systems.
This comes at a time when clients from several banks have bemoaned high transaction fees with some banks charging as much as US$0, 50 cents just for balance enquiries over online platforms. Some of the concerns emanate from the conduct of banks charging fixed monthly fees over and above the already existing fees regardless of whether the account was actively used over a given period.
Notably, official records reflect that a whopping 13.35% of the aggregate ZW$4,55 trillion profits recorded by the banking sector in the first half of the year 2023 was generated through fees and commission charges. But presenting the Mid-Term Monetary Policy Statement (MPS) recently, RBZ governor John Mangudya committed to deploy efforts towards addressing the challenge of high bank charges.
“Having regard to the need to strike a balance between business viability and the provision of affordable and accessible products and services in the spirit of promoting financial inclusion, the Bank continues to monitor bank charges, in collaboration with the Bankers Association of Zimbabwe.
“Against this background and cognizant of the relative exchange rate stability in the economy, the pricing model agreed between the BAZ will be maintained,” he said
He said the pricing model allows consideration of a review periodically, having regard to factors affecting such pricing including exchange rate movements.
“The Bank will continue to monitor the terms and conditions of business activities to ensure adherence to the pricing model, fair business practices and reasonable pricing in line with the Banking Act, and the Consumer Protection Framework,” added Mangudya.
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