THE Bank of South Pacific may have closed their Levuka branch almost five months ago because of commercial reasons, but they're back in business after signing a Memorandum of Understanding with Post Fiji yesterday for a pilot project offering banking services to those in the Lomaiviti Group through the Levuka Post Office.
Post Fiji board chairman Lawrence Tikaram said the proposal three months ago provided an avenue to expand as a service provider. He said it also meant becoming inclusive of government's efforts to provide financial and banking services to the wider community.
"This is a pilot project and we will review it with a very close eye. The most important part of this partnership is financial services to the people of Levuka will continue," he said.
BSP general manager corporate and international banking Cecil Browne said the pilot project would compensate what the bank had provided in the old capital.
"When we closed the Levuka branch, we expected some negative comments about what we were doing there but there were commercial reasons for doing that," he said.
"We're trying to extend the services to the customers that we have in Levuka." The bank's general manger microfinance, government and community relations Howard Politini said an experienced BSP staff in Levuka would be based at the Post Office offering essential banking services to a few thousand people from today.
The relationship between the two entities dates back to the 1990s when the bank started as the Post Office Savings Bank.