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Press Releases

Revised Code of Banking Practice

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), jointly with the Hong Kong Association of Banks (HKAB) and the DTC Association (DTCA), today (Thursday) announced the launch of the revised Code of Banking Practice ("the Code"). The Code is issued by HKAB and the DTCA and endorsed by the HKMA.

This is the first comprehensive review since the Code was first issued in 1997. The review was conducted by an Informal Working Group (IWG), convened by the HKMA and comprising representatives of HKAB and the DTCA. The IWG aimed at strengthening the provisions of the Code in the light of its operation in the past three years and to keep up to date with the latest developments of the banking industry. Major revisions to the Code include provisions which aim at:

  • making terms and conditions of banking services more transparent and consumer-friendly
  • enhancing the transparency of new or revised charges of authorized institutions
  • standardising the calculation of annualised percentage rates for credit card borrowing and personal loans
  • bringing the approach to card services in Hong Kong more in line with that in other financial centres
  • promoting the proper use of debt collection agencies by institutions
  • enhancing the standards of emerging banking services such as e-banking and stored value cards.

The IWG consulted the industry Associations and the Consumer Council extensively throughout the review with the objective of ensuring that the revised Code strikes a reasonable balance between consumer rights on the one hand and efficiency of banking operations on the other.

"The revisions to the Code should help to further enhance high standards of conduct and sound and prudent business practices amongst authorized institutions," said Mr Simon Topping, Executive Director (Banking Policy) of the HKMA and Chairman of the IWG.

The revised Code is effective from 1 December 2001. Authorized institutions are expected to comply with the new provisions as quickly as possible and by 1 June 2002 at the latest. Another 6 months is allowed for compliance with those revised provisions that require system changes. The provisions relating to card services and adjustment of fees and charges, which were promulgated in January and May 2001 respectively, are already effective. All authorized institutions will be required to submit to the HKMA an annual assessment of their compliance with the Code.

Going forward, HKAB, in conjunction with the DTCA, will assume greater ownership of the Code. Mr Peter Wong, Chairman of HKAB said, "A new Code of Banking Practice Committee comprising representatives of HKAB, the DTCA and the HKMA has been established. The Committee will continue to review and develop the Code in response to market changes and the changing needs of consumers."

Mr Cliff Forster, Chairman of the DTCA and a member of the IWG said, "We believe the Code will provide additional guidance to institutions in providing quality banking services to consumers and help enhance the overall level of service within the industry."

The Code can be viewed or downloaded from the websites of the HKMA (www.info.gov.hk/hkma/eng/public/cbp_2001/cbp_eng.pdf), HKAB (www.hkab.org.hk) and the DTCA (www.dtca.org.hk).

For further enquiries, please contact:

Jasmin Fung, Manager (Press), at 2878 8246 or
Thomas Chan, Senior Manager (Press), at 2878 1480

Issued jointly by

Hong Kong Monetary Authority
Hong Kong Association of Banks
Deposit-taking Companies Association

15 November 2001

Related documents:

1. Code of Banking Practice. (PDF, 397K)
2. Powerpoint presentation by Mr Simon Topping, Executive Director (Banking Policy) of the HKMA at the Joint Press Conference on 15 Nov 2001.(Powerpoint, 69K)
3. Letter to all Authorised Institutions, 15 Nov 2001.

Last revision date: 1 August 2011
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