Thursday, 15 November 2012

BSP Rural Rollout Rests on Security

The massive rural and mobile banking rollout program being undertaken by Bank South Pacific can only be sustained with support from the leadership of impacted rural communities and their people.
Ian Clyne and Paul Thornton at a press conference today
BSP Group CEO, Ian Clyne  said this in light of the bank management’s decision to close its rural branch in Banz, Jiwaka Province following a burglary earlier this month.

Mr Clyne said that whilst rural banking services is being seen as an essential service aimed at increasing financial inclusion for rural Papua New Guineans, rural BSP banks and agencies will only continue to operate in an environment where the safety of bank assets and staff are guaranteed by the community concerned.
He added that whilst the Bank had expanded substantial financial capital into the rural rollout and mobile banking program, the management of BSP would not hesitate to permanently close any branch or rural agency which continue to face the risk of being subjected to criminal activities, and where the community does not offer adequate assurance of security for bank employees and assets.
He gave the example of its Kwikila agency in the Central Province which was subject to armed robbery on two occasions, and which has now been closed permanently.
BSP Deputy General Manger (Retail), Paul Thornton also made reference to the bank’s Kerema branch which has been closed since being robbed in 2008, adding that talks were being held with provincial leaders from Gulf to determine whether the branch will be reopened and the format under which it will operate.
Mr Clyne also indicated that the more than 5000 customers of Banz BSP Rural bank will have to await the outcome of a police investigation into the burglary to see whether they will regain access to banking services through their agency.
And he warned that any further criminal act against this BSP facility will see its permanent closure.

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