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Missed opportunity to crackdown on loan sharks

Carol
BEAUMONT

Consumer Rights and Standards Spokesperson
17 March 2014 MEDIA STATEMENT

Missed opportunity to crackdown on loan sharks

The Government has squandered an opportunity to crackdown on exorbitant rates being charged by loan sharks that are financially crippling some our most vulnerable families, Labour’s Consumer Rights and Standards spokesperson Carol Beaumont says.

“The Government is claiming its Credit Contacts and Financial Services Law Reform Bill will stop unscrupulous lenders.

“However this Bill – which has just been reported back from select committee – fails to address the most important issue of excessive interest rates.

“Interest rate caps are increasingly commonplace throughout the world but have been disregarded by the Government.

“National’s inaction has caused immeasurable grief and hardship to thousands of families who have got caught up in spiralling debt with loans from predatory lenders.

“Communities find compounding interest rates of over 100 per cent charged by some third tier lenders to be abhorrent. These exorbitant rates are unjustifiable and take money from needy families.

“Labour will not sit back and leave this unchallenged. We will be putting forward amendments to the Bill to include interest rate caps to other new measures to protect the interests of consumers.

“I expect there will be strong support from communities and in Parliament for such amendments,” Carol Beaumont says.

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