While thanking Scotiabank for its years of service to residents of Virgin Gorda, Opposition Leader Andrew Fahie said he has exhausted all avenues required to ‘urgently’ address the void that the bank’s departure will create.
Fahie said he spoke to ‘most’ of the relevant stakeholders in the banking sector locally, including to the President of the Banking Association, Sjoerd Koster.
“I want to assure my people of Virgin Gorda that as Leader of the Opposition, I tried my utmost best to intervene in this matter,” he said.
Physical presence still a priority
The opposition leader said a physical banking option for Virgin Gordians still remains a priority as the island being bank-less would only ‘slow down’ its recovery process from last year’s disasters.
He also said it would prove to be more of a hurdle to residents as they would now require to travel to Tortola where the bank’s main branch is located.
“I will continue to press for the physical presence of banking services on Virgin Gorda as well as improved banking service on all our sister islands,” he added.
Fahie said based on his conversations with these banking facilities, “it was clear that only one bank seemed willing to fill the void created in Virgin Gorda.”
“I remain prayerful and hopeful that in the not-too-distant future that this financial institution, which I will not name at this time, will make this a reality.”
He said he will remain ‘relentless’ on this and others issues still affecting the territory.
The bank will officially close its sister island branch today August 31 in a bid to cut costs.
In the lead-up to today, technology conferences were held for residents to get familiar with the use of technology; something Fahie also commended.
Meanwhile, the National Bank of the Virgin Islands and Banco Popular are said to be exploring the possibility of opening a branch on the sister island.
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