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Feb 10, 2023

Senate Passes Credit Reporting System Bill

Michael Peyrefitte

Ministerial discretion was also the center of the opposition’s argument regarding the Credit Reports Bill brought to the Senate. As we have reported, the Briceño Administration is seeking the approval of the National Assembly to establish a credit reporting system in Belize. A credit bureau would be created under the legislation. And in addition to other responsibilities, it would gather data on an individual’s credit history, which they would then be able to share with creditors. Business Senator Kevin Herrera welcomed the general idea of a credit reporting system in Belize. However, if a customer believes the bureau has inaccurately assessed them, a newly established Review Commission would hear their concerns. The issue of who appoints that review commission is a concern for Senator Peyrefitte.

 

Michael Peyrefitte, Opposition Senator

“So, me now I want build mih lee house, I go borrow the money and get a bad credit rating. So, the bank says they have assessed you. They have said your name nuh good. So, I have a complaint because you may have essentially then defamed me by saying I have a bad credit rating. So, who do I complain? You have this credit system and I keep getting a bad credit rating, which in fact I may not have a bad credit rating. Well, according to the Act you complain to a Review Commission. But, madam president ah wah need more prayers. This dah nuh know court of law. This is a court of passing laws and holding people to what they promise. And here we have the ugly head of a minister rearing again. The Review Commission shall consist of the Director of the Bureau of Standards who shall be the chairperson and two persons, two members appointed by the minister, minister again.”

 

Kevin Herrera

Kevin Herrera, Senator for Business Community

“This is certainly a welcomed move I believe. What it does is allow financial institutions to screen borrowers and monitor risk profiles. Why is this important Madam President? Institutions need to assess risks before they are able to lend. So, when you go in and ask for credit they need to assess your risk profile. That is not possible without a system that is churning out data on individuals.”



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