The UAE’s Al Etihad Credit Bureau (AECB) has launched a mobile application which can assess how likely a cheque will bounce.

ChequeScore will help reduce the number of bounced cheques in the UAE by giving cheques issued through the country’s banks a score of between one percent and 99 percent, depending on how likely it is to bounce if cashed within the next nine months, the bureau said.

Individuals or businesses who receive a cheque can download the app, then scan the cheque, upload an image of it or enter the data manually to receive the score.

The credit bureau said the score is also colour coded, with low probability of bouncing assigned with the green colour, medium probability amber and high probability red.

“Last year, bouncing a cheque was a criminal offence; however, with the new law decriminalising this in the beginning of this year, it has become imperative that UAE businesses and individuals assess the risks associated with cheques they have on hand,” said the bureau’s CEO, Marwan Ahmed.

The score is calculated according to the issuer’s credit score, as well as cheque issuance and clearance history, on-time payments and other factors.

The app has been trialled on 11,000 cheques with a total value of 788 million dirhams over a number of months, the bureau said, on cheques worth from 500 dirhams to 100 million dirhams.

(Reporting by Imogen Lillywhite; editing by Cleofe Maceda)

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