Ministry of Finance building located at Commonwealth Drive, Bandar Seri Begawan
The AMBD is a statutory body that acts as the Central Bank of Brunei Darussalam and tasked with formulating and implementing monetary policies, as well as to supervise financial institutions and currency management.
In achieving these goals, AMBD continues to play a vital role through its developmental, regulatory and supervisory functions and will continue to work closely with the industry to provide a conducive environment and infrastructure for the sector to grow.
AMBD achieved another milestone last year when it officially launched Brunei’s first Credit Bureau under its jurisdiction to monitor and provide centralised records of individual borrowings with banks to enable them to determine risks and repayment capabilities and credit ratings of individuals.
The bureau – a unit under the Regulatory Department of AMBD – collects credit information of individuals and commercial entities to produce a credit report. It does not however, collect information on savings or deposits, net worth of individuals and commercial entities, or investments made through its members.
The service has been available to all licensed banks, finance companies and an Islamic trust fund since September 2012.
The establishment of the Credit Bureau has benefited the country by significantly reducing the percentage of non-performing loans and raising the country’s overall ranking in the ‘Ease of Doing Business Report 2014’
The self-inquiry service allows borrowers to access their own credit report in order to improve transparency, credit awareness and incentivise them to build and maintain a good reputation as well as to create a healthy credit culture. The public can verify, and if needed, rectify any information on the credit report.
The establishment of the Credit Bureau has benefited the country by significantly reducing the percentage of non-performing loans and raising the country’s overall ranking in the World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business Report 2014’.
In its bid to reduce household debt, AMBD earlier this year directed banks, finance companies and Perbadanan Tabung Amanah Islam Brunei (TAIB) to introduce the Total Debt Service Ratio (TDSR) system for all customers applying for a financing facility.
The new regulations are aimed at developing responsible and ethical lending practises by banks; promoting responsible borrowing behaviours to foster a healthy and sustainable credit market which in turn can contribute to economic and financial stability; and further strengthening the protection of consumers’ interests.
The TDSR set by AMBD is 60 per cent for customers with a minimum net salary of $1,750. Below this limit, customers will be subjected to the individual financial institutions’ internal policy on TDSR. Financial institutions are required to ensure that customers will not be over-burdened with the credit/financing facilities, according to the AMBD.
The financial regulator has also directed for the creation of a Consolidation Loan/Financing Scheme. Subject to meeting the required set of criteria, this scheme will help the heavily-indebted borrowers with significant monthly debt obligations to consolidate and lower their overall monthly repayment obligation.
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