News Column

Gov't to order Orient to improve business over loan scandal

January 16, 2014

TOKYO , Jan. 17 -- ( Kyodo ) _ The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry plans to issue a business improvement order on Friday against Orient Corp. over shady loans extended to members of organized crime groups by Mizuho Bank via the consumer credit company, government sources said. The ministry will urge Orient to compile measures to prevent recurrences, such as bolstering its screening to exclude so-called antisocial forces from transactions and enhancing awareness among its employees, according to the sources. The ministry, which supervises the consumer credit industry, is expected to hand a written reprimand to the top management of the company later in the day. Mizuho extended loans to gangsters after Orient accepted applications and conducted screening. The lender failed to shut out gangsters from its transactions and left the matter unattended for more than two years despite its knowledge of the issue. In September, the Financial Services Agency issued a business improvement order to the bank. Last month, the financial watchdog demanded that the bank halt some of its affiliated loans for one month. Orient announced internal disciplinary measures in November against its executives including President Masayuki Saito , who will forgo his pay for six months.

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Source: Japan Economic Newswire

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