SINGAPORE: Following stricter measures on advertisements, the number of licensed moneylenders has dropped from 260 to 218 from 31 October 2011 to 31 October 2012.
That’s a decrease of about 16 per cent.
Since the ban of print advertisements took effect last November 2011, licensed moneylenders say their business has dropped by 50 per cent.
In August, the Singapore Moneylender’s Association sent three proposals to the Registry of Money Lenders suggesting ways to tighten the business of licensed moneylending, and at the same time, to relax the strict advertising rules.
Some moneylenders are hoping that the authorities could allow them to advertise through the Singapore Moneylender’s Association, so that the association could help manage and control the advertisements.
Currently, moneylenders can only advertise on commercial websites, such as yellow pages, as well as on the walls, windows and doors of the company’s office.
They are also proposing that licensed moneylenders go through a background check to ensure they do not have any criminal records.
The third proposal is for new licence holders to have a minimum paid—up capital of $100,000 to $200,000.
Mr David Poh Cheng Seng, President of the Singapore Moneylenders’ Association, said they are discussing the proposal with the Ministry of Law.
"This is our way of strengthening our moneylending market and we have a good reputation among our licence holders. Currently, we don’t have any paid—up capital but we are in the pipeline of discussion through the Ministry of Law whether to set the minimum paid—up among our moneylending licence (holders) and also to check our background," he said.
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