PETALING JAYA: A consumer group has urged Bank Negara Malaysia and finance minister Tengku Zafrul Aziz to explain why a micro loan scheme operator has been allowed to charge extraordinarily high interest rates.
Speaking to FMT, Malaysia Consumers Movement (MCM) secretary-general Sukhdave Singh questioned the varying interest rates charged by GOpinjam, saying the maximum of 36% per year was “mind-boggling”.
“This is akin to interest charged by a loan shark,” he said.
The GOpinjam loan scheme, offered by Touch ‘n Go Group (TNG) and CIMB Bank Bhd, has come under scrutiny over interest rates ranging from 8% to 36% per annum, depending on the amount and duration of the loan.
TNG said yesterday that the scheme, which offers personal loans of between RM100 and RM10,000, adhered to Bank Negara’s lending guidelines.
Sukhdave called for a thorough review of lending guidelines to ensure loan schemes did not expose borrowers to high financial risks.
“MCM advises potential borrowers to wait for clarity from parties involved before taking any loan,” he said. “We urge TNG and CIMB to provide detailed information on how this product actually works.”
Financial planner Robert Foo also voiced his concern.
“My call to TNG is, please give us the full details,” he said.
On Wednesday, former prime minister Najib Razak said the high interest rates would be a burden to borrowers.