SOURCE: AUSBANC Internacional

November 12, 2008 11:00 ET

International Consumer Advocacy Organization Ausbanc Internacional Presents Historic "Universal Declaration of Banking and Financial Services User Rights"

30 Countries Support This Initiative; Consumers Ask for Their Voice to Be Heard at G-20 Summit

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - November 12, 2008) - Given that we are mired in a global crisis of enormous proportions, it seems inevitable that all social, political and economic forces be worthy negotiators in order to find the appropriate solutions that will allow us to move beyond the current situation. The capitalist and liberal economy, as it is currently devised, has proven itself to be worn out and other alternatives must be found which can make the reactivation of the markets possible. Nevertheless, it does not seem prudent for those who brought about the crisis to be the same ones who have to find ways to get out of it. There are voices, such as those of the consumers, who are the most important part of the process of consumption, which must be heard in various forums, such as the soon to be held G-20 meeting in Washington.

The Universal Declaration of Banking and Financial Services User Rights came about on the basis of this line of reasoning. The creation and wording of this document has been carried out with the participation of members of public and private international consumer advocacy and defense organizations, and it has received the support of more than 30 countries in Europe and South, Central and North America. This "Declaration" is the contribution that is being made by civil society, through representatives of 15 countries united under the umbrella of Ausbanc Internacional, to help those who must find the solutions to the crisis that we are suffering.


From the moment it was first introduced in the city of Salamanca in September of 2005, during a ceremony that included the joint participation of important credit and financial institutions that manifested their approval by signing it, the "Declaration" has made its way through Mexico, Brazil, Spain, Venezuela, Colombia, the United States and the United Kingdom, and it has even been placed in the Coffer of the Five Keys in the Sancta Sanctorum at the Library of the University of Salamanca, as well as at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in the repository of the General Archive of the Indies in Seville, Spain, at the Library of the Federal Senate of Brazil, at the National Assembly of Venezuela, at the Universidad Magdalena de Colombia, at the Historical Library of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid and at the General Council of Spanish Lawyers, among other places.

The "Declaration," which is a universal voice for consumers, consists of a preamble of "29 Whereas" and 54 articles which are divided into two Titles: "General Principles" as well as "Rights of the Clients of the Financial Entities."

This is the proposal that public and private organizations that work in defense of consumer rights and under the umbrella of Ausbanc Internacional are submitting to the G-20, a meeting which will attempt to find the first resolutions to this global crisis and once the commodities (oil) crisis has been overcome, in order to resolve the financial crisis, the crisis of the 'real economy,' the people's crisis, the voice of consumers, which is enshrined in this 'Universal Declaration of Banking and Financial Services User Rights,' must be heard. Because make no mistake, without consumers, there is no consumption.

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