Banks poised to lure more rich customers

JAKARTA: Some banks are preparing to get more upper-class customers through premium fund management or priority service, although Bank Indonesia has been suspending such kind of service for the last one month.Some of them have been re-operating such
Wandrik Panca Adiguna
Wandrik Panca Adiguna - 31 Mei 2011  |  05:16 WIB

JAKARTA: Some banks are preparing to get more upper-class customers through premium fund management or priority service, although Bank Indonesia has been suspending such kind of service for the last one month.Some of them have been re-operating such service after making internal check and reformation. However, others not having met the terms of the central banks must extend the suspension period.PT Bank Tabungan Negara Tbk Finance Director Saut Pardede said that BIs investigation has been completed and the management has complied the regulations, so priority service can be restarted.He claimed that BTN Prioritas, one service offered by this state-controlled bank, gives no big impacts to the bank business because it is not a product of wealth management or bancassurance service. In addition, the service has just been in operation since 3 months ago.Development of the service takes relatively short time because the number of depositors is still small. Actions taken in the development include equipping counters with CCTV monitors, network interconnection, and tape recorder to record transaction and procedure completion.In the meantime, PT Bank Central Asia Tbk has stated its readiness in running the priority service banking/wealth management. Flaws have been repaired, tomorrow [today] is the time to get internal report, President Director Jahja Setiaatmadja said.PT Bank CIMB Niaga Tbk Director Handoyo Soebali and PT Bank Panin Tbk Vice President Roosniati Salihin also mentioned similar thing. They viewed that the investigation and repair have been completed and today is the schedule for final evaluation.Suspension removalSuspension on tapping new customers of priority service should be removed simultaneously, PT Bank OCBC NISP President Director Tbk Parwati Surjaudaja said.We have completed most [fixings], leaving only the final verification. The operation should be restarted together. We hope BI clearance will take place this week, she said.On April 29, BI announced the suspension on accepting new customers, following the special investigation on 23 banks with priority banking/ wealth management. The period of the suspension is May 2 until June 2, 2011. Priority banking service is a special service for rich customers. They are facilitated with airport lounge, separated counter, and other personal facilities. Every bank has its own criteria for the customers in a term minimum fund, such as IDR200 million, IDR500 million, and IDR1 billion.Meanwhile, wealth management is a managed fund service for high-class customer for investment providing by investment manager to give suggestion for investment.In the meantime, banks have stopped for new customers due to enhance their services quality, security, and protection in a case of fund burglary of Citibanks premium customers by Melinda Dee, Relationship Manager of CitiGold.However, the priority banking or wealth management service for existing customers continues to be operated normally.During a period of the time off, BI will keep eyes and evaluate against improvements which have been realized.Data of several banks have been submitted in the central bank to be verified, as informed by Deputy Governor of BI Halim Alamsyah.Bureau Head of Public Relation of BI Difi A. Johansyah confirmed the verification process compiled by Bank Monitoring Directorate I, II, III and Monitoring Directorate of Bank Syariah.After completing the verification and improvement process, the banks will hold an authority to re-operate the recruitment of new customers for wealth management and priority banking services.But, if banks havent been ready yet, the suspension period will be longer by the central bank.We give a deadline for a month. Then, the banks reports will be evaluated and verified for holding an approval in re-operating the services, he said.In addition, Bank Indonesia has formulated a tighter regulation on wealth management and priority banking.Re-check the reportsDuring the suspension period, BI asks banks to audit carefully the premium customers reports as politicians or officers, to investigate the money laundering possibility against wealth management or priority banking facilities.Banks are obligated to audit at least 75% of wealth management portfolios to ensure whole procedures and managed fund in accordance with the regulation.Unfortunately, the implementation of know your customer (KYC) regulation isnt realized in several banks yet.There are political exposure not to be reported leading to possibility of money laundering. Actually, every customers should pocket an approval for the facilities from compliance director. (t01/t04/wiw)

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