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Westpac’s package:

Thursday 4 March 2010 | Published in Regional


In line with the two other trading banks, Westpac bank yesterday announced a range of measures to help those affected by Cyclone Pat.

General manager Rob Buick says, “Our thoughts are with everybody affected by this disaster.

“We spent three days assessing the damage and providing immediate assistance on the ground to our customers. I was shocked by the devastation, seeing families outside their damaged homes surrounded by debris. It was a very sad sight,” said Buick.

The bank still has Rarotonga staff in Aitutaki assisting the branch operation and holding appointments with customers about their individual financial requirements.

“Westpac understands how events like this can affect our customers and local communities. We know our customers’ financial circumstances will be affected and we encourage customers that need assistance to contact their local Westpac branch or relationship manager as soon as possible to discuss how we can help,” Buick said.

Westpac’s relief package for Cook Islands customers include:

• The suspension of repayments on Westpac Home Loans and Personal Loans for up to three months

• No set up fees for existing Westpac business and personal customers on new loans or top up loans to repair cyclone damaged property

• Restructuring loans without incurring the usual establishment fees for business customers

• Terminating term deposits without the early termination fee penalty to allow for quick access to their funds

• Replacement of EFTPOS /credit card terminals damaged continues to be free as per normal policy

The bank also made a $26,000 donation yesterday towards the Red Cross Aitutaki School Breakfast programme which began last week as schools began reopening.