The country’s two credit reference bureaus have rolled into action and commercial banks are now submitting credit information to the two entities.
This followed the amendment last year of Credit Reference Bureaus Act of 2010 which compels commercial banks to provide credit data dating back to two years.
This data will be used by financial institutions and other players in the financial sector to check the credit worthiness of individuals and companies.
A credit reference bureau is a company licensed by the central bank to collect, store and collate credit information on individuals and companies from different sources and provide the information in form of a credit report upon request of a lender.
RBM spokerperson Mbane Ngwira said in an interview last week all commercial banks except FDH Bank had fully complied with the new arrangement. FDH Bank was given an extension due to other factors.
He said: “Since the Act was amended, banks were given six months to provide data to two bureaus in the name of Credit Data and CRB Africa to which they have complied.
“Previously, individual banks were keeping such information on their own which was creating some problems as some clients would default loans in a number of institutions without being traced.”
Credit Data managing director Patricia Mwase said her bureau had already collected two million credit files for individuals and corporates.
“The data that we have gathered so far is enough to start with and we will be getting more as we go,” she said.
But Mwase said there is need to sensitise the public to the new arrangement to ensure that people can use the available data in the course of doing business activities.