Banks call for three-month auction freeze

Bankers fear that the government’s decision to freeze property auctions up to the end of the year is promoting a nonpayment mind-set among debtors.

Although the Finance Ministry insists the freeze will only concern the cases of homes on the verge of auctioning, the result according to bank officials will be that delays in debt repayments will increase as debtors anticipate a new, more favorable payment plan.

This is why banks are now proposing a three-month informal freeze and not an institutionally introduced suspension of all auctions up to the end of the year, in order to have a complete and definitive framework for the management of nonperforming loans drafted and passed. The constant discussion of the issue and the fragmentary moves have accentuated the problem, say bankers.