The Central Bank of Kuwait Giving Special Attention to People with Disabilities

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Kuwait City, Dec 3: As part of its’ endeavors to enhance financial inclusion, the Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK) continues to devote its attention towards the banking sector’s special needs customers and provide them with banking and financial services that align with their needs through its supervisory instructions to Kuwaiti banks, and its continuous monitoring of the services provided to this particular segment.

In a statement by the CBK marking the International Day of Persons with Disabilities observed annually on December 3, it noted that the CBK instructions to the banking system led towards providing various banking services to customers with special needs. These services were provided through 62 branches equipped to serve people with disabilities, and include 417 employees trained to interpret sign language. In addition to 67 ATMs installed accessible to people with disabilities.

The CBK issued in mid-2015 its instructions regarding banking services provided by Kuwaiti banks to people with special needs to provide them with clear and easy access to banking and financial services.

The said instructions require banks to select at least one branch in each governorate in the State of Kuwait to provide banking services for people with special needs beside its normal activities, and allocate at least one ATM equipped with voice guidance and a Braille keyboard. A bank is also required to train some of its employees in sign language, or appoint specialists in this language in the branch. The instructions also require banks to provide easy access for the customers using wheelchairs to ATMs. In addition, account statements and notifications for visually impaired customers should be printed in Braille. Modern and secure technological programs such as screen readers, electronic fingerprints, and mobile phone programs should be available to help them perform banking transactions, considering the security requirements in managing the account, and informing customers with special needs, through the appropriate means of communication, of all rights, obligations, risks and the other requirements before providing them with any banking services through the appropriate means and channels.

The CBK concluded its statement by affirming its care and keenness to ensure that customers with special needs access all financial and banking services that suit their needs and protect their rights, stressing on its vigorous monitoring of the Kuwaiti banks’ compliance with instructions issued in this regard.

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