Equal Opportunities Commission


E-news Issue 177


Hong Kong Association of Banks, Hong Kong Monetary Authority and EOC jointly release banking services information in ethnic minority languages

On 28 December 2017, the Hong Kong Association of Banks (HKAB), the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) jointly released essential information on banking services in seven languages used by various ethnic minority (EM) communities in Hong Kong.

In a survey published by the EOC in 2016, it was found that EMs faced quite a lot of barriers and even discrimination when using banking services, such as opening bank accounts and applying for credit cards. This joint initiative, therefore, is aimed at facilitating better access to information by EMs and promoting their rights in using banking services.

The said information covers: the general principles of the Code of Banking Practice and the Treat Customers Fairly Charter, as well as practical information including security tips on using Automated Teller Machines, account opening, dormant accounts, financial health, and the Deposit Protection Scheme. The seven EM languages are: Bahasa Indonesia, Hindi, Nepali, Punjabi, Tagalog, Thai and Urdu. The information is now available on the websites of the HKAB, the HKMA and the EOC.

In addition to deepening EMs’ understanding of their rights, the EOC has been working with the two associations to provide racial sensitivity training to banking staff.