Clients are kept ignorant of various commissions
Abdul Khaleque Khandker
Recently a report broke loose in the local dailies that the working banks are deducting money from the customers’ accounts at will in the name of various service charges, but the customers are not informed of those charges.
As the Bangladesh Bank has not fixed the amount of service charge, the working banks are cutting service charges at their sweet will from the hard-earned money of the customers, it is further alleged.
The customers are also made to pay the amount of interest as charged by the bank, and also they are paying as much as 45 types schedule of charges unknowingly.
Of these charges 29 types of commissions are being deducted from the client’s accounts in case of import and export.
In taking loans, clients are to count 12-15 types of fees. The clients are made to count even the charges for the settlement of loans. Besides there are a lot of hidden charges about which the clients are kept quite ignorant, known from concerned sources and banking sectors.
Apart from these, the service charge on the credit card has been raised too high. As a result, the clients are economically suffering. In this situation the economists called upon the central bank to fix the service charges and to direct the banks to hang all types of commission rates at the bank branches. for the interest of the customers so that the clients may know about the commissions and service charges that the banks are deducting from their accounts indiscriminately.
It is also learnt from the related sources that Bangladesh Bank served office order from 1 April, last year to implement 9 per cent interest on all kinds of loans excepting credit card only, and accordingly Bangladesh Bank is providing various supports on principles. Even then the loan interest is not coming to 1 digit. At present the loan interest is 9 per cent in document, but in reality, it is 12-18 percent (except incentive loans), because the banks have raised their service charges the double. Earlier 20 paisa were deducted from each L/C but 40 paisa are deducted now from each L/C and earlier if they deducted 40 paisa but now, they are deducting 80 paisa. As a result, the customers’ expenditure is increasing. The source also informed, as many as 15 types of commissions or charges are taken on foreign trade (import). Of these there are L/C opening commission.
Even after hundred percent FDR (Fixed Deposit), the clients have to count 0.40 per cent commission for opening site L/C. The customers have also to pay the commission at the same rate even for taking loans from back to back, export development fund (UDF) and different granted funds. This commission is again, exorbitant for deferred (due) L/C, and that is 0.50 per cent. The clients have also to count excess commission at the time of opening L/C and increasing its amount. If it is the foreign L/C, the customers have to count 750 taka, and if it is a local L/C, the clients have to count 300 each time. Ad confirmation charge is 0.20 per cent.
For local L/C, where the minimum charge is 1000 taka, but for the SAARC countries, this amount is 2000 taka, and the charge for the countries outside the SAARC is 3000, these are also learnt from the competent sources.
The suffering clients have, therefore, called upon the authority concerned to look into the matter on priority basis so that banking transaction of the country remains transparent and help promote local and international trade and business for the development of the country.