A controversial foreclosure bill has been signed into law in the Republic of Cyprus over objections from the country’s finance minister, who has accused lawmakers of populism.
President Nikos Anastassiades has signed into law the Foreclosure Bill, which postpones for several months the seizure of property, a measure that drew condemnation from Finance Minister Constantinos Petrides.
responsible and irresponsible borrowers
Last month, Petrides, who was head of government reform before taking over the ministry, said the bill sent the wrong message by “protecting primarily strategic defaulters at the expense of depositors and consistent borrowers.” warned that it was sending
Anastasiades initially refused to sign the seizure bill he referred to the Supreme Court last year, but two other VAT bills were also due to be submitted to the Supreme Court this summer after approval by the House of Representatives. .
The issue divides Greek Cypriot society, with people blaming either those who borrow money and never pay it back, or the bankers who target the homes of the poor.
Government spokesman Marios Pekeranos told the Cypriot News Agency on Friday that the president has referred two bills on the VAT to the Supreme Court, which will “drastically reduce the country’s revenues.”
But Pelecanos told CNA that the president signed the foreclosure bill into law.
Last year, the president took the matter to the Supreme Court, but this summer he ruled that delaying seizures for several months was a “temporary measure” and “not unconstitutional,” urging the government to implement the law. rice field.
Bench said there was no violation of the right to enter into contracts freely or the principle of separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches of government.
But local economists and EU officials frowned upon the three bills, with Petrides lashing out at lawmakers last month and warning against “dangerous and unrestrained populism”.
Petrides warned that a reform bill would need to be passed to properly handle foreclosures, but the island’s bad-debt culture could not be safeguarded, and that deferring foreclosures would only be possible under certain criteria. It claimed it was jeopardizing an EU bailout fund intended to protect responsible homeowners who need help paying their mortgages.
The issue has divided Greek Cypriot society, with some blaming people who borrowed money to build a house and never pay it back, and a big bank chasing a little man who could become homeless after a foreclosure. Some people accuse