Can remittance companies lend money?

A check with the Monetary Authority of Singapore revealed that it is not their intent to allow companies issued a licence for remittance business to conduct consumer lending.
A check with the Monetary Authority of Singapore revealed that it is not their intent to allow companies issued a licence for remittance business to conduct consumer lending.PHOTO: ST FILE

Volunteer welfare organisation Blessed Grace Social Services has been helping distressed maids with loans to licensed moneylenders to negotiate repayment plans.

In doing this, we noticed that many maids have loans with a particular remittance company.

A check with the Monetary Authority of Singapore revealed that it is not their intent to allow companies issued a licence for remittance business to conduct consumer lending.

Lending charges and late payments for moneylenders are clearly spelt out and governed by the Registry of Moneylenders under the Ministry of Law.

But this remittance company is able to set its own charges and penalties without any regulatory governance.

It is also still able to issue loans to maids, as the aggregate loan cap of $1,500 applies to licensed moneylenders but not remittance companies.

Can the relevant authorities help to clarify this discrepancy?

Billy Lee