ABCUL – the Association of British Credit Unions – has welcomed steps taken in Parliament this week which will see increased access to safe and ethical financial services in communities and workplaces across the country. A Legislative Reform Order, which will make changes to the Credit Unions Act 1979, was re-laid before Parliament on Tuesday (19 July).
The Order will make a number of changes to the Act including allowing credit unions to provide services to community groups, attract investment from local businesses and extend services to new groups, including housing association tenants and employees. Credit unions will also be able to pay interest on savings, instead of a dividend, making saving in a credit union more attractive.
Subject to scrutiny by Parliamentary Committees, the changes should be in place early in 2012.
Chief Executive of ABCUL Mark Lyonette said: “Credit unions around the country along with their partners have been eagerly awaiting these changes, and so I’m delighted that they are on track to be in force by next year.
“In campaigning for these changes we’ve taken a great deal of inspiration and received much assistance from our international colleagues. The timing of this announcement couldn’t be better as we will be able to share this news with them when they arrive in Glasgow this weekend (22nd July) for the World Credit Union Conference.”
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Notes to Editor:
ABCUL is the main trade association for credit unions in England, Scotland and Wales. At the end of September 2010, Britain’s credit unions were managing more than £600 million of members' savings on behalf of almost 900,000 people, and had over £500 million out on loan.
ABCUL is the country’s largest development, information and training network for credit unions. It is a democratic, not-for-profit organisation and is improving day-to-day operations, legislation and regulation for all credit unions.
Credit unions are financial co-operatives owned and controlled by their members. They are licensed deposit takers, authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority and they are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, so the first £85,000 of a member’s savings are completely safe.
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