In the National Assembly there is concern about the breach of regulations and the lack of control of agencies that monitor the financial and corporate system. Between January and September of this year, the financial entities reimbursed $ 1.2 million corresponding to undue charges to their account holders, by order of the Superintendency of Banks that resolved 50,808 complaints.
Only in October, the claims that affected citizens made directly to financial institutions allowed the return of $ 554,348. While the Superintendency of Banks, after enabling citizen complaints channels for undue charges and case analyzes, issued 3,764 orders for the return of funds, according to the institution’s head, Juan Carlos Noboa, although he did not specify why.
Banco del Pacífico returned $ 953,437 from January to October, while Produbanco repaid $ 249,312. Banco del Pichincha replaced $ 183,529 and Diners, $ 134,666. / 2 Banco del Pacífico and Produbanco are the entities that had the most funds to reimburse.
Superintendent Noboa, who appeared on the morning of Wednesday, October 24, before the Economic Assembly Commission of the National Assembly, said that the claims to the bank went from 1,371 cases in 2017 to more than 51,000 in 2018. The official said that audits are currently underway to nine banks to learn about the processes for collections without authorization from the client and continue to perform these special examinations to the rest of financial entities.
“All banks that have failed to comply with the law and made a collection without authorization from their clients will be sanctioned even if they return the money,” Noboa emphasized, adding that according to the regulations, they could obtain an economic penalty of up to 0.005% of assets.
In addition, a reform project was submitted to the Monetary and Financial Regulation Board to regulate financial services and to protect the express acceptance of clients. On his side, the superintendent of Control of Market Power, Christian Ruiz, informed the legislators that, after the institution’s website was enabled to make complaints about undue charges from banks, 150 cases were registered to date, of which 63 were sent directly from the Assembly.
He pointed out that these claims, added to information requested from control agencies, will allow the prosecution of three cases opened for unfair practices; abuse of market power; or restrictive agreements and practices.
The lack of control and sanction disturbs the Assembly
The chairman of the Economic Regime Commission, Pabel Muñoz, described as “serious” the problem of undue collections by banks and noted that financial entities made a refund of approximately $ 1, 7 million between January and October.
“There is a tacit acceptance that they made an error. However, the law that establishes fines for non-compliance with regulations has not been applied, “said the legislator. He also stressed that if the collection is made by a financial entity in favor of a commercial or service company, both the Superintendency of Banks and the Superintendence of Companies must carry out the corrective measures to control this system and the actors that are participating and benefiting of the collections.
He pointed out that an explanation is needed on the use of the database accessed by the companies that offer insurance or services, since it would be another breach of the law by banks, if this information is marketed.
The legislative committee approved the motion to prepare a report with the contributions of the control authorities so that the document passes to the plenary session and the necessary actions are considered. (I)