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CPA to file new case against chambers

Sunday 06 January 2013

​The Consumer Protection Association described the positions of the chambers of commerce and industry in Jeddah and Riyadh as “disobedient” and said that it is facing the same response from chambers at all regions.

It said that most of them did not commit to the Cabinet decision for each of them in every region in the country to allocate 10 percent of the fees they impose on approving commercial documents annually as revenues for the CPA.

On Wednesday, the Administrative Court in Riyadh ordered the Riyadh Chamber to pay the annual 10 percent, but an official at the chamber told a local newspaper that it would appeal the verdict.

Naser Al-Tuwaim, head of the CPA, told the newspaper that the CPA intended to file a similar case to demand its payments from the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI). “We won the case against the Riyadh Chamber and we will file another against the Jeddah Chamber, because these two are the ones who led the disobedience of not paying the CPA’s payments as per the Council of Ministers’ decision.”

Abdulaziz Al-Ajlan, member of the board at Riyadh Chamber, said that the CPA “should look for sources of income away from traders.” He wondered how would the CPA demand financial support when there is a “conflict of interest” represented in the fact the CPA is concerned with consumers and the chambers are concerned with traders.

Al-Tuwaim, the CPA’s head, said the CPA had tried to solve the issue (before going to court) through several correspondences sent from time to time to Riyadh Chamber, “but these attempts failed. The chamber ignored them.”

The CPA's lawyer Muhammad bin Abdullah Al-Oraifi said the CPA will file cases against a number of chambers that did not implement the Council of Ministers’ decision and that court will bring justice to the CPA. “It is a matter of time. The CPA will get its payments.”

Al-Tuwaim said: “Consumers will feel the results of the court decision (against Riyadh chamber) after the chamber had caused obstructions to the CPA’s progress and programs for a long time.”

The newspaper quoted sources from the CPA as saying the CPA intended to pursue local banks because of “breaches to regulations” in the next few weeks. They said the CPA’s studies regarding banks showed that some Saudi banks have committed breaches represented in imposing administrative fees on the issuance and renewal of ATM cards, and that some of them deduct two riyals from accounts that contain less than SR1, 000.

The CPA will file a detailed report to the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (the country’s central bank) on breaches some banks commit against their clients in a few weeks.