In the framework of activities for marking the 20th anniversary of its establishment, the Central Bank of the Republic of Kosovo held a discussion for marking the World Consumers Rights Day on the topic: The role of the CBK in the field of Consumer Protection.
On this occasion, the CBK Governor Fehmi Mehmeti said that the measures taken by the CBK during these 20 years have resulted in a modern and sound financial system that is successfully fulfilling its financial mediation role in support of the sustainable development of the country's economy.
An important measure, according to Governor Mehmeti, is the activities aimed at protecting the consumer of financial services by focusing on the two main pillars of consumer protection: handling of consumer complaints and the financial education.
"While in the first years of the financial system's operation the focus was on creating conditions for providing basic financial services to the country's economy, we have now reached a stage where more and more attention is being paid to the quality of these services, with the activities aimed at protecting the consumer of financial services being undoubtedly one of the most important measures. By handling the complaints, the CBK intends to ensure the implementation of all contractual rights and obligations between financial institutions and clients, in cases where clients consider that such a thing has not been fulfilled. In recent years, the number of clients of financial institutions that file a complaint with CBK regarding the fulfilment of their contractual rights has increased. We consider that the increase in the number of complaints directly reflects the higher awareness of clients about the right and the possibility to file a complaint, which is contributing to the better protection of their rights, to the correction and advancement of internal processes in financial institutions themselves in the provision and further development of financial services as well as the to the avoidance of various errors. Clients' complaints represent a very important source of information for the CBK, which often takes them into account during the supervisory activities undertaken to financial institutions", said Governor Mehmeti.
Governor Mehmeti said that in addition to activities taken to address possible violations by financial institutions in relation to client rights, CBK is working intensively on financial education of the public, which aims to increase the public knowledge of financial products and their rights in relation to the financial institution.
"In addition to its activities in promoting financial education, the CBK continuously encourages financial institutions themselves to increase their activity in support of increasing public knowledge of financial products, because well-informed consumers take reasonable action and directly contribute to further development and maintenance of financial stability", said CBK Governor Fehmi Mehmeti, while mentioning the CBK's contribution to consumer protection being a member of the Consumer Protection Council, an inter-institutional body that aims to provide a harmonized and comprehensive approach to ensuring consumer rights protection in Kosovo.
On the other hand, Minister of Trade and Industry Endrit Shala thanked Governor Mehmeti for organizing this discussion, expressing readiness to further continue cooperation between the two institutions in the field of consumer protection.
Part of the discussion was the presentation of the way the complaints of users of financial services are handled at CBK and at financial institutions.