The Crest of the Commonwealth of Australia Treasury Portfolio Ministers
Picture of Bernie Ripoll

Bernie Ripoll

Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer

5 March 2012 - 18 September 2013

Media Release of 16/03/2012

NO.003

Making it Cheaper to Send Money

Joint Media Release with
The Hon. Richard Marles MP
Parliamentary Secretary for Pacific Island Affairs
Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs

Australia is making it cheaper for people to send money back home to family members living in the Pacific.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, Bernie Ripoll, said a new PacificMoney Transfer Card would cut the cost of transferring money from Australia to a number of Pacific island countries.

"Financial institutions have responded to Government calls to make it cheaper and easier to send money home," Mr. Ripoll said.

"The PacificMoney Transfer Card, launched by the ANZ, is a two card pre-paid VISA solution which will benefit Australians with family members living in Fiji, PNG, Samoa and Tonga."

Parliamentary Secretary for Pacific Island Affairs and Foreign Affairs Richard Marles said remittances were important to many Pacific island communities.

"Family members often depend on this money to cover day-to-day living expenses, to provide a cushion against emergencies or even fund small investments," Mr. Marles said.

"However it can be expensive to send money back home to loved ones, in some cases costing up to one third of the amount sent."

Mr. Ripoll said ANZ worked with the Australian Government to make banking more accessible.

The Australian Government has engaged in a number of other initiatives at the international level to reduce the cost of sending money overseas, such as:

Monitoring trends in remittance fees and charges since the Pacific Islands Forum of Economic Ministers' Meeting in 2009.

Leading, along with Italy, the G20's work on remittances, which included developing a 'toolbox of policy measures' that G20 members can adopt to improve remittance flows and reduce costs.

Proposing initiatives to reduce remittance costs at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2011. As a result, Commonwealth Heads of Government committed to implement practical measures to reduce the cost of sending money overseas.

The Australian and New Zealand-funded website, SendMoneyPacific [www.sendmoneypacific.org], allows customers to compare the cost of remitting funds by remittance provider and delivery method. It has increased competition amongst remittance providers. Remitters are benefiting from more information, increased choices and lower costs.

16 March 2012