Bank 'not listening' to anger of customers

Stewart Stevenson MSP
Stewart Stevenson MSP

Local SNP MSP Stewart Stevenson has said that Royal Bank senior executives ‘failed to answer‘ many questions at their appearance before the Scottish Affairs Committee (SAC) at Westminster this week.

The Banffshire & Buchan Coast MSP said it was ‘disappointing‘ that RBS had also failed to listen to the anger and frustration voiced by so many of the customers and business hit by their branch closure plans.

Committee Chairman SNP MP for Perth & North Perthshire Pete Wishart described the response from RBS executives as “immensely frustrating and disappointing”.

Commenting, Mr Stevenson said: “I share the frustration of my Westminster colleagues. The closure of so many Royal Bank branches in many of the North-east’s larger towns indicates that management at the bank just don’t get the realities of living in a rural community.

“While it is accepted that a lot of people choose to do their banking online or by phone, for businesses which handle cash and many individuals who receive cheques, that simply isn’t an option.

"RBS had many questions to answer and it was disappointing that they failed in so many respects. The three senior executives – including the Chief Executive Ross McEwen - gave the clear impression they are just not listening to the concerns of all the communities and businesses hit by their closure plans – which still mean the loss of dozens of branches across Scotland – hitting rural areas who depend on banking services very badly.

"Unfortunately, this is a bank that now looks to be purely interested in maximising profits and losing its community responsibilities. They have failed to listen to the anger and frustration that so many customers and businesses have voiced about their cuts and closures and failed to answer questions from Parliamentarians.

"I and my SNP colleagues will continue to try to save these banks. RBS is still owned by the taxpayer and the taxpayer is getting a raw deal as things stand.”