SBP directs banks to display contact details to facilitate customers State Bank of Pakistan

SBP directs banks to display contact details to facilitate customers

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has issued directives to all banks, urging them to prominently display contact details to facilitate customers in addressing complaints and resolving issues effectively.

In a circular issued on Thursday, the central bank emphasized the importance of providing accessible channels for customers to communicate concerns and register complaints.

The circular refers to BPRD Circular Letter No. 27 dated September 02, 2015, and subsequent instructions, which advised banks and Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) to establish an internal mechanism for the swift handling of complaints related to discrimination in the provision of financial services, particularly for Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs).

Key Instructions from the Circular:

1. Prominent Display of Contact Information: Banks and DFIs are instructed to display a placard in their branches at prominent locations. This placard should include the address, phone & fax numbers, and email address of the focal person designated to handle issues related to Politically Exposed Persons.

2. Contact Details for SBP Focal Person: The display should also provide the contact details of the focal person designated by the State Bank of Pakistan, as mentioned in the circular. This facilitates the resolution of complaints from Politically Exposed Persons through the central banking authority.

3. Consumer Complaint Handling: The circular reiterates the guidelines from BC&CPD Circular No. 1 dated February 29, 2016. Banks and DFIs were previously advised to establish effective and efficient “contact points” for handling consumer complaints. These “contact points” should be visibly provided on the displayed placard to inform customers about where to lodge general complaints.

4. Contact Details for Banking Mohtasib: Banks and DFIs are also instructed to display the contact details of the Banking Mohtasib on the placard. This is in line with the guidelines stipulated in BPRD Circular Letter No. 18 dated August 10, 2010. Customers can approach the Banking Mohtasib for escalating their general complaints.

5. Avoidance of Discriminatory Practices: Banks and DFIs are strongly advised to ensure meticulous compliance with these instructions and refrain from adopting discriminatory practices against any segment of society, including Politically Exposed Persons.

These directives from the SBP underscore the commitment to enhancing customer service and ensuring that customers have clear and accessible avenues to address their concerns. By mandating the display of contact details, the SBP aims to promote transparency and accountability within the banking sector, fostering a customer-centric approach.

The circular emphasizes the importance of not only addressing complaints related to Politically Exposed Persons but also ensuring that general consumer complaints are handled promptly and efficiently. As these measures are implemented, customers are expected to benefit from improved communication channels, contributing to a more customer-friendly banking environment in Pakistan.