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The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has spoken of his embarrassment that links between the Church of England and pay-day lender Wonga have revealed.
The former Bishop of Durham had yesterday promised to take on lenders like the Newcastle United sponsor.
He said he would compete it out of business by promoting credit unions as an alternative to pay day lenders.
The Archbishop said he was irritated and embarrassed after it emerged that the Church of England indirectly invested in the payday lender.
Talking about the revelation that the church's pension fund had invested in payday lender Wonga, the Most Reverend Justin Welby has said the business is "incredibly complex" and explained of a £5.5bn portfolio, £75,000 was invested indirectly in Wonga without his knowledge.
Speaking on BBC Radio 4 Today's programme, he said: "It shouldn't have happened, it's very embarrassing but these things happen and we have to find out why."
The Archbishop of Canterbury is reported to "furious" by the BBC after it was revealed that the Church of England pension fund invests in one of Wonga’s key financial backers.
The Most Reverend Justin Welby yesterday launched an attack on the payday loan company saying he wants to "compete it out of existence" by supporting credit unions.
The Church has now launched an investigation into how it has come to invest in the company.
- The Most Rev Justin Welby read law and history at Trinity College, Cambridge and began his career in the oil industry based in Paris and London, where he worked on West African - mainly Nigerian - and North Sea projects.
- He became a group treasurer in a company called Enterprise Oil, before resigning in 1987 after 11 years in the industry to train for the Anglican priesthood.
- He has also served on the parliamentary Banking Standards Commission.
The Archbishop of Canterbury has admitted he is embarrassed by the revelations that the Church of England pension funds indirectly funded in online lender Wonga.
Asked by John Humphrys on BBC Radio 4 Today's programme whether he was embarrassed, he replied "yes."
Asked to place his embarrassment on a scale of one to 10, he said: "Eight."
The Church of England’s pension fund has admitted it invests in one of Wonga’s key financial backers, the Financial Times (£) reported.
The fund invests in Accel Partners, a US venture capital firm that led the fundraising for Wonga in 2009, the report states.
A Lambeth Palace spokesperson said: “We will be asking the Assets Committee of the Church Commissioners to investigate how this has occurred and to review the holding in this pooled investment vehicle.”
Newcastle striker Papiss Cisse has agreed to wear the logo of sponsor Wonga on his shirt.
The 28-year-old Muslim had refused to display the pay-day loan company's branding on his kit because earning interest is forbidden by Islamic Law.
However, after several weeks of delicate negotiations, the Senegal international and the club have now found a solution and the player, who missed the club's pre-season training camp in Portugal as a result of his stance, will return to the fold.
The Archbishop of Canterbury has spoken on BBC Radio 4's Today programme of his "embarrassment" after it was discovered the Church of England's pension fund had indirectly invested in payday lender Wonga.
It comes a day after the Most Reverend Justin Welby told Wonga the church wants to "compete it out of existence" by supporting credit unions:
The Archbishop of Canterbury has told ITV News the church will conduct a review following revelations the church's pension fund indirectly invested in payday lender Wonga: