printer icon

NZ set for biggest banking shake up in decade

New Zealand could soon be on the cusp of open banking, possibly one of the greatest shake-ups in how customers manage their money, FintechNZ general manager James Brown says.

Brown is already in the UK brokering relationships which will have a lasting impact on opportunities for New Zealand companies in the UK.  This week he will be part of a large ­­New Zealand and Australian delegation to attend fintech conferences of which open banking will be high on the agenda.

“These events will help us prepare a report on what needs to go into the free trade agreement between the UK and New Zealand to create the right opportunity for fintech to thrive between both countries.

“We are in the early stages of negotiations to agree a formal partnership with Royal Bank of Scotland RBS which will give Kiwi companies access to all their support.

“We will be seeking input around barriers and opportunities that need to be addressed to make that happen, your input would be greatly appreciated.

“We know all the challenges that the financial services sector around the world are facing and that open banking in the UK is floundering.

“New Zealand is a more agile smaller market and our banks have proven in the past with efptpos they can work together. More recently Kiwibank has been supported with the Kiwibank accelerator by SBS bank.”

The Consumer Institute’s latest banking survey showed a meagre six percent of customers switched banks in the past 12 months and less than one out of 10 were very likely to change this year. The big four Australian banks still command most of the market.

The Reserve Bank is monitoring the development of open banking and, if necessary, will weigh in if it believes progress is too slow or the rules aren’t working.

Customers can expect fairer treatment from banks, insurers and other financial service providers as the government moves to introduce a new regime to regulate financial conduct.

Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi says under the new regime, the government plans to ban target-based sales incentives, which put profits ahead of people.

Brown says if New Zealand adopts open banking, it will create a more transparent financial services sector.

“This will create more competition and better pricing, more jobs and better product alignment depending on the stage of life the customer is at which will help drive economic growth.

For further information contact James Brown on 021 982247 or Make Lemonade editor-in-chief Kip Brook on 0275 030188

FinTechNZ Disruptive technologies are revolutionising traditional financial services, creating opportunities for start up entrepreneurs and corporate innovators. FinTechNZ helps connect, promote and advance the trends shaping the FinTech ecosystem.