Banks in the UAE need up to 45 days to cancel a credit card at the request of its holder and provide a clearance certificate due to new purchases or possible defaults, the Central Bank has said.
A Central Bank official, quoted by the Dubai-based Arabic language daily 'Emarat Al Youm', said reported persistent attempts by the country’s 23 national banks and 28 foreign units to dissuade clients from cancelling their credit cards are understandable within the marketing perspective.
The paper said the unnamed official was reacting to complaints by credit card holders that banks take a long time to annul cards at their request while bank employees persistently try to dissuade customers from cancelling their cards.
“The delay by banks in closing the credit card account is because the clients could have made new purchases by the card or they owe fees which are not due for payment yet…so the banks take a period of up to 45 days within the card closure request to provide the client a clearance certificate,” he said.
“This period is agreed upon by the banks and the central bank does not have any regulations for banks regarding the closure of credit cards as this is subject to general banking practices and the internal policy of each bank.”
The paper quoted the official as saying persistent attempts by banks to persuade customers to change their minds about closing their card account comes “within the framework of marketing and promotion.”
“But at the same time, no one can force the customer on doing anything which he does not want,” he added.