The Belize Credit Union League is the umbrella organization of all the credit unions in Belize. The league has been in existence for sixty-three years and is regulated by the Central Bank of Belize. Credit unions are known to many as the institution that has less red tape when it comes to borrowing monies and focuses much of its campaign on encouraging persons to save consistently. What the credit unions are currently focusing on, however, is the push for entrepreneurship and the start-up of small businesses. Jacqueline Taibo is the Compliance Officer of the BCUL and was a guest on the Business Perspective this morning on Love Television. She spoke of going live with the local banks which will save its members monies.
Jacqueline Taibo – Compliance Officer of BCUL: “We do a lot of things as a movement and so one of the big projects that we are currently working on is joining the National Payment System and so the Credit Unions decided that they wanted to have their own hubs for the clearing of cheques and doing transfers so from Credit Union to Credit Union you will be able to do transfers, you will be able to clear your own cheques and then we will join the hub at the Central Bank for between Credit Union to bank and so we should go live with that in January of 2020 and we are really excited about it. It is going to be a big plus for our members because the fees that are being charged is high and so we look at our members, there are member-owners as well and so we are not going to be exploiting them or charging them these extravagant fees so all members surely have something to look forward to. Credit Unions is a nonprofit Organization and so whatever monies that we make is invested back into the member and into the Credit Union while our bank serves easily, it is profit oriented so it is a big difference.”
According to Taibo, the nine credit unions around the country are becoming more liquid since members are opting to save more and borrow less. While it is a good practice, credit unions are developing programs like the Eco-Micro Project which Taibo explained.
Jacqueline Taibo – Compliance Officer of BCUL: “There is a project that talks about the sustainability of agriculture and fishing in the changing climate and that project has just begun and so I think that it is that the Credit Unions are supposed to develop a product around grid financing in respect to agriculture and fisheries and then they are supposed to help these small to medium-sized enterprises to develop their technology, enhance their technology and whatever it is that they need to survive. I think it is a good opportunity for the Credit Unions especially for those who operate in areas whereby they partake in the agricultural belt like maybe in the north with the cane farmers you know, in Toledo with the small farmers and different rural areas here in the city.”
The Belize Credit Union League currently has one hundred and sixty thousand members with an estimated one billion dollars in assets