The Chancellor has welcomed Tesco Bank's announcement that it plans to launch a personal current account product next year.

The government's reforms to the banking system are designed to increase competition and choice for consumers. Tesco Bank's announcement is evidence that these efforts are working.

More choice, coupled with the 7-day current account switching service which launched in September this year, means consumers no longer need to put up with poor service from their banks.

The government also welcomed Tesco Bank's decision to create 300 jobs in Glasgow and Edinburgh as part of its plans. It reaffirms the crucial role that Scotland has to play in the ongoing development of the UK banking sector.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, said:

"I am delighted that Tesco Bank has today confirmed its plans to enter the current account market. This is a boost for Glasgow and Edinburgh and another step towards a more diverse UK banking sector. I want consumers to have as much choice as possible and the only way to do this is to encourage new, challenger banks to enter the market.

Tesco © The Economic Voice"I am determined to create a banking sector that serves the needs of customers rather than the other way round. That is why the government has armed consumers with 7-day account switching, a powerful weapon for them to demand better services from their bank."

Chief Executive of Tesco Bank, Benny Higgins said:

"Today's announcement reflects the strong progress we are making towards the launch of our current account as well as creating a significant number of new jobs.

"Healthy competition in banking is essential for the well-being of customers in the UK. The recent introduction of the switching service is welcome in that it removes one important barrier. But real progress requires a cultural shift in the sector away from opaqueness and punishing inert behaviour in favour of transparency and rewarding loyalty.

"The design of the product features and services of our current account has been anchored in the views expressed by Tesco customers around simplicity, transparency, convenience and the need for loyalty to be rewarded."

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