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“Banks must finance the real economy, small and medium-sized enterprises, but above all they must hold down or immediately lower lending rates to the extent that they keep deposit rates fixed,” Alexis Tsipras emphasized in his statements after the conclusion of the meeting with the governor of the Bank of Greece, Giannis Stournara.

In particular, the president of SYRIZA-PS stated that “we had the opportunity today to be informed by the governor of the Bank of Greece and his colleagues about the course of the Greek economy, the fiscal and macroeconomic forecasts as well as to exchange thoughts on the possibilities and challenges facing the Greek economy”. Mr. Tsipras said that he expressed to the commander of the Central Bank “our concern about the large increase in private debt over the last 3.5 years, an increase of approximately 40 billion euros, as well as the increase in non-performing loans which are now approaching 110 billion euros.” He noted that “this combined with the inflationary crisis and the increase in lending rates is creating a new generation of bad loans, as thousands of borrowers who were servicing their loans are now unable to service them».

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Therefore“, he added, “we expressed our concern that the number of non-performing loans will increase even more.” He emphasized that “of course, this combined with the new bankruptcy law passed by the ND government which removes the protection of the first residence, no longer obliges creditors to make arrangements with borrowers, creates a huge social problem”. He added that “when a tsunami of auctions is imminent in the next period, social instability will also translate into economic instability».

Also, Mr. Tsipras expressed his belief that “in these circumstances the excessive profitability shown by the banks, although this phenomenon may not have a stable perspective, however if they present it in combination with the fact that they are not fulfilling their role in financing the real economy, they create an intolerable condition».

In the same context he said that “when the rate of profit on equity for Greek banks is three times that of German banks and above all when deposit rates remain fixed – while lending rates increase with a difference that now exceeds 5% when the European m.o. is at 2%-, we are facing a condition that cannot be tolerated».

He noted that “banks have to finance the real economy, small and medium-sized enterprises, but above all they have to hold down or immediately lower lending rates to the extent that they keep deposit rates fixedn”.

Of course“, he underlined, “I expressed the view that it is premature to talk about dividends to bank shareholders when we have been through so many adventures and when the banks today are alive thanks to the deferred tax and the constant recapitalizations from the money of the Greek taxpayers».

Finally, Mr. Tsipras underlined that “a progressive government, therefore, has a plan to protect society, the first home, to give a perspective of sustainable arrangements that will give both protection to society but also a sustainable development perspective for both the banking system and the economy itself».

And at the same time, he continued, “a consolidation plan, continuation of the effort to consolidate the banks in a sustainable way, without this challenging profitability for Greek society that cannot be based on any real forecast».

Asked if there was a coincidence of views with Mr. Stournaras, Mr. Tsipras replied that “there is an exchange of views, a fruitful exchange of views, and this is the first important step».