Caution advised with internet loans

Published: 30/9/2016

In response to citizens' inquiries regarding the operation of Ferratum Bank plc in the Republic of Croatia, the Croatian National Bank releases the following statement:

Ferratum Bank plc is authorised by the competent authority of the Republic of Malta to provide banking services in its home state, Malta, and directly in the territory of other member states of the European Union, including the Republic of Croatia. However, pursuant to the regulations in force in the Republic of Croatia and in the European Union, the Croatian National Bank neither authorises nor exercises prudential supervision over the operation of credit institutions from other member states of the European Union that directly provide services in the Republic of Croatia – their operation is supervised by the competent authorities of the member states that have authorised them. 

Specifically: a credit institution from another member state of the European Union authorised to provide services in its home state may also provide such services in Croatia, through a branch or directly, as of the date the Croatian National Bank receives a notification to this effect from the competent authority of the member state concerned. This is in accordance with the Credit Institutions Act, which transposed Directive 2013/36/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council into Croatian law, ensuring the freedom to provide mutually recognised services in the European Union. These banks are listed at the CNB website. A European Union bank providing its services through the internet is not required to submit a prior notification of the intended provision of services to the Croatian National Bank.

When concluding contracts with such institutions clients must take into account that the Croatian National Bank cannot provide them with the same level of monitoring of consumer protection as clients of domestic credit institutions it has authorised and whose operation it supervises. Credit institutions from other member states of the European Union may, pursuant to regulations in force in the member state of authorisation, apply different business rules.

Citizens intending to use the services of a credit institution from other member states of the European Union providing services in the Republic of Croatia or enter into a business relationship with such an institution, including through the internet, are therefore advised to obtain detailed information on the principles of the European market of financial services. They are also strongly recommended to carefully analyse the available information and documentation on the products and services offered prior to reaching a final decision, as is customary when concluding any contract. If necessary, they can consult with experts to be able to fully understand all the rights and obligations to be assumed by contracting a product or service.