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Weak Response to Loan Shark Rip Offs

Andrew Williams MP
Spokesperson for
Commerce
28 May 2014
Weak Response to Loan Shark Rip Offs
Thousands of Kiwis are being left to the mercy of loan sharks and will continue to face exorbitant interest rates, says New Zealand First.

“The National Government has blatantly ignored the simplest and most effective measure that would have protected many families from crippling payments – a cap on interest rates,” says New Zealand First Commerce Spokesperson Andrew Williams.

“The government has made a song and dance about the Credit Contracts and Consumer Finance Amendment Bill. However, all they have done is write pages of fine print that no-one will read, and certainly not people who have limited or no English skills.

“Instead, the one practical step of placing a limit on interest rates would have brought relief for countless families who need to borrow money in their hour of need.

“New Zealand First was the only party to vote against this bill because it fails to fully protect vulnerable people.

“Many countries already have interest rate caps, such as Australia, UK, USA, Canada, South Africa and much of Europe. Other countries are in the process of introducing similar legislation, including India, Hong Kong, Thailand, Vietnam. Philippines and Turkey.

"But this National Government thinks it knows better. National just does not care for the most vulnerable in our country. They live in a different world to the people who are affected by loan sharks. While this government was elected to work for all the people of New Zealand, they have shown no desire to carry out their duty.

“New Zealand First will continue to work towards getting an interest rate cap in place to stop money lenders ripping off families and hardworking New Zealanders," says Mr Williams.

ENDS

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