CANBERRA, AAP – How small banks have responded to the royal commission and COVID-19 will come under the spotlight at a federal parliamentary committee hearing on Thursday.

The economics committee will hear from Bank of Queensland, Beyond Bank, HSBC Australia and ING Australia.

As well, for the first time newer banking players Volt and Judo Bank will give evidence about their operations.

The small bank sector has not faced the committee since late 2019.

Liberal MP and committee chair Tim Wilson said customer-owned and foreign banks operating in Australia were not exempt from scrutiny.

He wants them held to account in the same way as the four major banks.

“The committee’s scrutiny will include the banks’ progress in implementing the recommendations of the Hayne royal commission into misconduct in the banking, superannuation and the financial services industry,” Mr Wilson said.

The banks are also expected to be asked about their COVID-19 pandemic response.

Mr Wilson said neobanks such as Volt and Judo Bank have the potential to boost competition in the banking sector.

Neobanks operate solely online, ordinarily through a smartphone app, and do not have the backing of one of the big four banks.

“They have a long way to go and face many challenges, as we have seen with the acquisition of 86:400 and the closure of Xinja,” Mr Wilson said.

The inquiry will also hear from the Australian Banking Association.