Primary residence protection law enables people to pay their debts, Euclid Tsakalotos says

File Photo: Ο υπουργός Οικονομικών, Ευκλείδης Τσακαλώτος, μιλάει σε πολιτική εκδήλωση. ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ, ΛΑΣΚΑΡΗΣ ΤΣΟΥΤΣΑΣ

The main feature of the primary residence protection legislation is that it helps the so-called ‘red’ or non-performing loans return to the black and enables people to repay their debts, Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos said on Wednesday in an interview with the radio network ‘Sto Kokkino’ in Patras.

“What we wanted was to have a law that has one ‘leg’ in the old Katseli-Stathakis law …and another ‘leg’ that makes it possible for the state to assist citizens in paying their debt,” he said.

This was done by “sharing the cost” of the non-performing loans, so that the government contributed some money, the borrower entered a system where he was able to repay the debt and the banks restructured the debt, Tsakalotos explained.

  • “Everybody wins something and everybody loses something so that the debt can be repaid; in other words, it is a policy approach for returning to normality,” he said.
  • Replying to a question on the ‘social dividend’, Tsakalotos said that the government, as it had in the previous three years, would again share out any surplus cash that was left over after budget targets were met at the end of this year, provided that targets were exceeded.

On Greece’s return to the markets, the finance minister said that the decision to issue a five-year and 10-year bond was a “successful strategy” and noted that prior to this decision, before Christmas, some had claimed that Greece could not access the markets.

“It is important to have stable access to the markets, even more so if the bond is for 10 years, which is the definition of normality,” he added. If markets were prepared to lend to Greece for 10 years, he said, this signalled confidence in the long term.

  • “This gives us some relief and also means that the interest rates are lower for both the state and businesses, thus marking a return to normality,” Tsakalotos said.

The finance minister is scheduled to speak at an event organised by SYRIZA’s Achaia branch in Patras at 19:00 on “The Economy and Society after the Memoranda”.

Source: ANA-MPA

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