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Bank closures: Hockey must release numbers.

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Stephen Conroy - Bank Closures - Hockey Must Release Numbers Tuesday, 30 October 2001

ALP News Statements

Bank Closures - Hockey Must Release Numbers Stephen Conroy - Shadow Minister for Financial Services and Regulation

Media Statement - 29 October 2001

Joe Hockey, the Minister for Financial Services and Regulation, must authorise the release of figures that will inform Australians about just how many bank branches have shut across the country in the last year.

The number of bank branches that closed in the last year was to be released in September by Australian Prudential Regulation Authority.

Where are the statistics?

Why are they late?

How many bank branches have closed in the last year?

These are the questions that must be asked of Joe Hockey and John Howard.

John Howard has allowed banks to continue their branch closure programs.

Last week, the Commonwealth Bank closed another four bank branches. The branches of Blackwater in Queensland and Essendon, Prahran Markets and Titles Office City in Victoria closed.

Banks continue to withdraw banking services from communities to increase their profits.

Labor will work to restore banking services to areas from which they have been removed.

Where a bank proposes closing a bank branch, Labor will require banks to provide six months notice of a closure in all areas so that communities are able to find replacement banking. This will be amongst the toughest branch closure protocols in the world.

Labor demands that Joe Hockey let Australians know what is happening to their banks. He must release the bank branch numbers now, not delay them until after the election as he is planning.

Australians will not tolerate such a 'mean and tricky' tactic.