Should Companies Also be Able to Convert Loans in Swiss Francs into Euros?

Total Croatia News

Swiss Franc loan conversions for businesses, as well as citizens. 

Croatian Association of Trade Unions, supported by the Dalmatian branch of the Croatian Employers Association, has sent an open letter to the government seeking to include companies into the government solution for the problem of loans in Swiss francs. They demand that small and medium-sized companies should have their loans converted into euros, just like the citizen will be able to do, reports Tportal on August 31, 2015.

The letter was addressed to ministers Boris Lalovac, Gordan Maras and Ivan Vrdoljak. They are asked to free companies from the “unfair credit yoke” because otherwise the government’s proposal would be unfair and possibly illegal and unconstitutional. On the other hand, trade unions and employers welcome the government’s intention to make life easier for the citizens who have ended up in debt bondage due to the loans in Swiss francs.

“If these loans are unjust and exorbitant, then their effects should be annulled for all recipients, including businesses”, said the president of the Croatian Association of Trade Unions Ozren Matijašević. “Small and medium enterprises are the locomotive of the economy because they employ over half a million people and generate 50 percent of total exports and incomes. In companies with loans in francs, there are 50,000 employees”, said Matijašević, who does not have any detailed data on the number of such loans and their total amount. “How could we have them when the Croatian National Bank has been refusing for a year to give us that information?”

The unions have said that they will organize the protests of workers of these companies if their proposals are not taken into account. They say the relief to the household budgets will not have too much sense if their employers are not able to pay them salaries due to the burden of the loans denominated in Swiss francs.

The president of the Dalmatian branch of the Croatian Employers Association Goran Prgin, whose company has in recent years lost about 17 million kuna due to the exchange rate fluctuations, shares the union’s opinion: “It is a shame that the banks are generating huge profits on these loans.” For many years, the Croatian Employers Association has been silent on the subject of the Swiss franc loans, which is strange since the association brings together employers who have great problems due to such loans. The impression is that the Association is actually on the side of the banks.

“The association should have reacted and it is a mistake that has not been done. Those of us in the Dalmatian branch will try to initiate action at the national level”, said Prgin.


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