Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-01-16-Speech-3-187"

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"Consumer and housing loans in Greece have reached 95 billion euros: consumer credit is growing at the highest rate of any country in the Euro area, and is approaching the EU’s annual budget total. This is a sign of increasing poverty. Two million households are borrowers, of which 3-4% are unable to service their debt. In most cases the debt exceeds 40% of income, which results in constant repossessions by bailiffs. The same is also true for small and medium-sized enterprises, which are forced to resort to borrowing. The banks ruthlessly pocket enormous profits from high interest rates on loans and low interest rates on deposits, unlawful and irregular deductions and charges, misleading advertising, etc., leading to workers going ever further into the red. The EU supports financial institutions by guaranteeing profits and by alleviating the consequences of its unpopular policy, which restricts the buying power of workers and decreases their quality of life. The proposed directive safeguards the principle of the freedom to draw up contracts, despite unequal negotiating capacities. It strengthens financial capital by transferring responsibility to the consumer. It safeguards against compensation for early repayment, promotes the harmonisation of legislative provisions and the opening up of national markets in the consumer credit sector, and is deliberately complex and unintelligible for borrowers. The Members from the ΚΚΕ (Communist Party of Greece) are voting against the strengthening of financial credit and campaigning for a genuine people’s economy for the benefit of workers."@en1

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