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RBC becomes first Canadian bank to offer indigenous languages telephone service

TORONTO, March 30, 2010— RBC today announced the introduction of Cree and Inuktitut, two of the most commonly-spoken indigenous languages in Canada, to its multi-language telephone banking service. RBC is the first Canadian financial institution to offer telephone services in these languages.

Launched in 2008, RBC's multi-language telephone service has more than 2,600 specialized interpreters who help with day-to-day basic business and personal banking inquiries such as opening an account, paying bills or requesting foreign exchange information at no cost to the client. Interpreters are available to help translate 180 different languages.

"Canada is home to a variety of languages that many organizations do not recognize, or have the capacity to service through translation," explained Dale Sturges, national director, Aboriginal Banking, RBC. "We are pleased to be able to continue reaching out to an underserved market by incorporating Cree and Inuktitut into our customer service capabilities. RBC has a long history of building relationships with the Aboriginal community and we remain committed to finding innovative ways to partner with our clients to meet their financial needs."

Clients can call 1-800 ROYAL 2-0 (1 800 769-2520) to access the RBC agent-assisted service and within minutes will be connected with an interpreter via a three-way confidential conference call.

"Access to banking services plays an important role in the creation of wealth and economic sustainability in Aboriginal communities," added Phil Fontaine, special advisor to RBC. "Cree is spoken by approximately 117,000 people and there are roughly 35,000 Canadians who speak Inuktitut, making them two of the most common indigenous languages spoken across the country. The fact that RBC is providing services in these languages is a testament to its deep understanding of the unique needs of the Aboriginal market it serves."

About RBC and Aboriginal Canadians
RBC has a proud history of strong relationships with Aboriginal peoples. We are committed to serving Aboriginal governments, communities, organizations, businesses and individuals by creating opportunities for sustainable economic development through: access to banking and capital; community and social development; employment, education and training; and procurement. RBC has been operating in the far north since 1921, and currently has six branches located north of 60°, with additional agency banking operations located in remote First Nations communities. We employ approximately 100 full- and part-time employees in Nunavut, the Northwest Territories and the Yukon. In 2009, RBC invested more than $250,000 in community initiatives across the far north. For more information visit www.rbcroyalbank.com/commercial/aboriginal/pdf/rbc-aboriginal-ptnr-2008-e.pdf.

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Media contacts:
Matt Gierasimczuk,
416-974-2124, matthew.gierasimczuk@rbc.com

Janet Gibson Eichner,
416-974-7622, janet.gibson-eichner@rbc.com

 



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03/30/2010 09:04:18