Reports 15 – Mutual Banking Code Compliance Committee Annual Report 2009/2010

The Mutual Banking Code Compliance Committee Annual Report 2009/2010 is now available on our website.

This Report sets out the Committee’s key achievements for the reporting year 1 July 2009 to 30 June 2010. The achievements set out in the Report include those arising from the Committee’s role in monitoring and investigating the activities of those credit unions and mutual building societies (the Mutuals) that have voluntarily subscribed to the Mutual Banking Code of Practice (the Code).

The Report also outlines the Committee’s work to influence improvements in the standards of practice and service of the Australian mutual industry and how the Committee hopes to build on that work in the future.

The Committee’s role is to ensure that the Mutuals who have voluntarily subscribed to the Code meet the standards of the Code. 

For this reporting year the Committee’s key achievements were:

  • establishing an operational framework and Secretariat for the Committee
  • conducting the first annual compliance review exercise (the Annual Compliance Statement)
  • reviewing information prepared for customers  or members  by the Mutuals for visibility of and access to the Code, and
  • conducting the first compliance review of direct debit cancellations.

 In summary, the Committee found that the Mutuals have:

  • generally taken positive steps to incorporate the Code and its 10 Key Promises into their day to day operations
  • demonstrated good compliance levels with 3 of the 10 Key Promises; in particular: fair and ethical dealings, providing clear information about products and services and responsible lending
  • acted in the spirit of the Code in some areas e.g. assisting disadvantaged customers or members  but still need to develop policies and processes to embed these practices, and  
  • further compliance work to do in other areas, most notably in providing customers or members with visibility and access to the Code and the 10 Key Promises. In that regard, the Committee received positive feedback from Mutuals on its ‘Visibility and Access Report’ and hopes the Report’s findings will assist them in meeting their obligations.

 Overall the Committee:

  • is encouraged by the positive steps Mutuals have taken to act in accordance with, and to incorporate , the Code
  • sees the voluntary adoption and implementation of these minimum standards of good practice as an indicator of the Mutuals’ commitment to their industry and their customers or members, and
  • considers the industry’s progress to date an example of some of the strengths of its self regulatory framework.

 Over the next 12 months the Committee will work closely with key stakeholders to influence improvements by Mutuals and the industry as a whole.

Key features of the Committee’s work for 2011 will include the 2011 Annual Compliance Statements and the release of the Committee’s findings on direct debit cancellations.

 

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