Credit bureau kicks off in six-month

BoT Governor, Prof Benno Ndulu.The Credit Reference Bureau (CRB) expects to start offering services mid-next year after finalising updating debtors’ creditworthy information.

Currently, the Bank of Tanzania (BoT) said, the bureau achieved its updating objective by almost 90 per cent and credit reference information would be available in the next six months.

BoT’s Governor, Prof Benno Ndulu (pictured) said the two firms, licensed to gather credit reference info, are supplementing borrowers’ particulars with addition payments - such as electric, water and phone bills.

“These additions information has necessitated the delays due to their importance on determining borrowers’ payment culture,” Prof Ndulu said.

He said, during the financial inclusion launching last week, almost all banks have provided their client information to the bureau, which will cut costs incurred by banks to create credit data base individually.

BoT currently has selected Germany’s Creditinfo International GmbH and US business information firm Dun and Bradstreet to provide credit information on behalf of the central bank under stipulated law and regulations.

But BoT will not run the CRB. The two firms were picked as a result of a tender process organised by the BoT, with the support of the World Bank, with Creditinfo selected to set up a Credit Reference Databank System.

Once in place, the central bank would support commercial banks to establish whether debtors are creditworthy or not, the move that seeks to curb loan defaulters.

To score good rate would-be-borrower has to get a first-rate based on how many times had paid his debt obligation ranging from electricity, water, grocery bills and even commercial bank debt.

The absence of the credit bureau has been termed as one of the high interest rates as commercial banks have little information of the borrowers’ creditworthiness.

BoT licensed the two companies to ensure productive operations while ensuring the information collected managed and secured. 

The project is carried out by BoT under the Financial Sector Support project on behalf of the commercial banks, which have their own reference but its data are limited.
Source: Daily News, reported by Abduel Elinaza from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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