Minister for Foreign Affairs (Australia): Lower bank fees support Australia's Pacific engagement

Pacific and General

I welcome the Commonwealth Bank’s decision this week to join the ANZ and Westpac banks in reducing fees for money sent internationally. These reductions will benefit customers in Australia and their families overseas.

In particular, thousands of communities in the Pacific region rely on money sent from friends and family who live and work in Australia. Remittances fund essential services like education and health, and can help entrepreneurs establish small businesses and create jobs. These economic links with the region benefit Australia and our industries, and help Pacific Islanders build their skills, experience and savings to improve livelihoods.

Given these benefits, the Australian Government has continuously advocated for reducing the cost of remitting money from Australia.

The Australian aid program supports price-comparison initiatives like the Send Money Pacific website, and promotes new technologies that enable people in the Pacific, especially women, to access effective financial services. The economic empowerment of women is crucial in developing strong societies and strong economies.

I encourage Australian banks to continue exploring ways to reduce the cost of sending funds overseas, in order to ensure that more remittances can be directed to those in our region who need it.

Source: Minister for Foreign Affairs, The Hon Julie Bishop MP


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