Last month, the Welsh Assembly Government published a three year Action Plan for supporting the Welsh credit union sector which seeks to build upon the great strides already made in the sector’s development since the devolved administration’s creation a decade ago.
The plan, Raising the profile: meeting the challenges, is backed by £3.4 million in available funding and is based on the findings of last year’s research report by the Cardiff Institute for Co-operative Studies. It sets out 5 core objectives:-
- Increase credit union market penetration from 1.82% to 6% or 43,000 to 142,000 by 2020
- Increase public awareness of credit unions by 2013
- Increase the asset base from £21m to £75m by 2020
- Increase number of active volunteers from 754 to 1,000 by 2013
- Work to support credit unions to meet 3-year business plans making progress towards sustainability
Launching the plan, Social Justice Minister, Carl Sargeant AM, said: “This action plan demonstrates the Welsh Assembly Government’s continuing commitment to supporting credit unions.
“In this difficult economic climate, it is more important than ever to provide accessible and affordable financial services for the people of Wales. As well as providing a safe and convenient way to save and offering low cost loans, credit union members can access a range of other financial services. These can include current accounts, debt management advice and Christmas savings accounts.
“I am committed to helping credit unions in Wales secure long term sustainability. By 2013, I hope that many credit unions will have achieved, or be very close to achieving self-sustainability.”
Mark Lyonette, ABCUL Chief Executive, said: “The Welsh Assembly Government has been a great supporter of credit unions ever since it was established and we are delighted to see this support continue with the publication of this Action Plan.
“We look forward to working with WAG to ensure that the Action Plan’s ambitious but achievable objectives are met.”
Download the Plan:- WAG Credit Union Action Plan 2011