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Kiwibank Registration: Promise Versus Reality

Kiwibank Registration: Promise Versus Reality

Monday 4 Feb 2002 Rodney Hide Press Releases -- Economy

"Kiwibank Chairman Jim Bolger has finally admitted that the launch of Kiwibank is not on target," ACT Finance Spokesman MP Rodney Hide said today.

"In announcing that Kiwibank now has full registration Jim Bolger stated, `Kiwibank intends operating a small number of branches in a pilot programme for six weeks before the full launch across the country in April and May'.

"The Bank is now two months behind the promised schedule and is yet to sign up one of the 176 franchisees.

"NZ Post assured the Finance and Expenditure Select Committee on 12 December last year that Kiwibank would be launched in February or March 2002, that between 25 and 30 branches would be opened a week, and that within 3 months virtually the entire Postshop network with 300 Postshops would have banking facilities.

"In October 2001 Bank CEO Sam Knowles promised Postshops that 30 branches would open in February.

"We now only have seven branches for February and Jim Bolger saying the launch has been put off until April and May. The February "launch" is now only a "pilot". The slippage is considerable. The problem with franchisees being paid only 53 cents a transaction is a big one, and yet still there is the constant denial that there is a problem.

"Kiwibank is a political bank promised by Jim Anderton last election. It's well past time he fronted up and explained the slippage and explained why NZ Post can't pay the franchisees the true costs of completing a transaction," Mr Hide said.

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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