Jamaica: Finance Minister Tables Microcredit Bill

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Feb 2019
Jamaica, February, 27 2019 - The Bill seeks to regulate the persons who provide microcredit services, ensuring that such persons are licensed by the Regulatory Authority.

The Microcredit Act (2019) was tabled in the House of Representatives on February 26 by Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke. The Bill seeks to regulate the persons who provide microcredit services, ensuring that such persons are licensed by the Regulatory Authority. They will also be required to keep proper accounting and other records and make reports to the Regulatory Authority on a timely basis.

The Bill also seeks to regulate the provision of microcredit services offered by microcredit institutions, in order to ensure, among other things, that microcredit services may be utilised by micro, small and medium-sized enterprises and individuals to facilitate their financial or economic advancement; the interest of borrowers may be protected by discouraging excessive interest rates and predatory lending practices by microcredit institutions.

It prohibits false and misleading advertising by microcredit institutions; and makes it an offence for microcredit institutions to use threats and violence in the process of collecting a debt.

The Bill identifies the Consumer Affairs Commission as the body responsible for accepting complaints against microcredit institutions, investigating complaints against microcredit institutions and formulating a code of conduct for microcredit institutions on consumer-related matters.



 

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