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Gov't looking to access dormant bank accounts sooner

Published:Friday | April 14, 2017 | 12:00 AM

Minister of Finance and the Public Service Audley Shaw is looking at reducing the timeframe for Government to have access to dormant bank accounts.

Billions of dollars remain unclaimed in local financial institutions.

Under the Banking Act, money in bank accounts that have been dormant for 15 years or more become part of the revenues of the Government.

However, Shaw says the 15-year period is too long and a proposal to reduce the timeframe will be submitted to Cabinet shortly.

He was addressing the Young Entrepreneurs Association of Jamaica (YEA) policy forum at the Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) headquarters in New Kingston, on Wednesday.

His comments were in response to a proposal from the group for the dormant funds to be used for the benefit of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). 

He agreed that some of the funds could be made available to the SMEs for special programmes.