New fee at Co-op bank from March

Account holders with the Grenada Co-operative Bank Limited will be subjected to a new fee from March.

According to Managing Director of the bank, Richard Duncan, an Account Maintenance fee will be applied in order to recover the cost of doing business.

Duncan told reporters at a press conference held at the bank’s head office on Church Street, St George’s that Co-op has been forced to take a fresh look at its operations..

He said: “The model that we have used in the banking industry over the years is being recalibrated, so things that people did not pay for in the past, they are now asked to pay for. What the model is saying now is that cost in part if not in full should now be recovered and while the international banks have led and we are following, we would tell you that since 2011 that we would ensure that our fees and charges are fully disclosed”.

Duncan stated that the banking industry has changed drastically over the years and the Grenada Cooperative Bank is no exception in this regards.

He said the bank has looked at the business model among others and realised that if it is to remain competitive and to continue offering the services that it does, then changes have to be made.

“We have recently communicated to customers or started a communication process to customers that there will be an Account Maintenance fee come the first of March, so that is part of the recalibrating of the business model in the banking sector.

“…What we however, commit in our Charter is that when we come to our fees and our charges there will be several things. First of all there will be competitive and affordable. Secondly, there will be full disclosure of those fees and charges and that the fee structure would be simple and transparent, so there will be no hidden fees.

“…There will be no unfair penalties, the fees will be simple to understand and they will be among the lowest in the market so that is our promise and commitment to customers…”.

Duncan disclosed that letters would be sent out to all account holders informing them of the new fee that is coming on stream.

He said the set fee is $1.77 per month and charged quarterly.

There are some exemptions, he noted for those involved in the Education Investment Plan, Junior Savers, and Insurance Saving Account.

“…There are four or five account types that will be exempted from that account maintenance fee,” Duncan said.

In May 2014 Co-op bank had introduced an Over the Counter Withdrawal fee for doing business with it.

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