According to the South African Government News Agency (SANews) the Financial Services Laws General Amendment Bill was tabled in Parliament last week.
In short, ‘the Bill, which was released for public comment in March, addresses urgent issues in eleven financial sector laws, including legislative gaps that were highlighted after the 2008 financial crisis and to align these laws with the new Companies Act, 2008, and other legislation.’
The Consumer Protection Act is one of the other pieces of legislation referred to here. Warren Radloff wrote an article (Treating Customers Fairly or CPA?) when we were making submissions to Treasury earlier this year on the gaps which would be left if the Bill was enacted as it was. To take the wordplay further, gaps through which consumers would fall. In short, the Bill excludes Banks and Insurers from the scope of the CPA without suggesting an existing alternative with the same wide protections. We don’t suggest that it is a bad idea that the Banks and Insurers should have their own consumer protection regime. Far from it. But consumer should not be left out in the cold in the process.
I have not had a chance to look at the new version of the Bill and Treasury’s response to the submissions made. I will do so in time for the October edition of Consumer Law Review.