The Slovenia Times

Central Bank Rejects Need for Measures Over Swiss Franc Fallout


Measures like those adopted in Hungary and Croatia because of problems with the loans are inappropriate and unnecessary, Zadravec Caprirolo said in the wake of calls for measures, most notably from the opposition United Left (ZL).

According to her, the debt holders can either leave things unchanged or ask their bank for a conversion into a euro-denominated arrangement and thereby avoid future exchange rate risks.

But they cannot do anything about the exchange rate changes that have already befallen them, Zadravec Caprirolo added.

The debate on the issue is meanwhile still ongoing among politicians, with Karl Erjavec of the coalition Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) for instance arguing today that the government should "find an appropriate solution".

The DeSUS president said that banks could for instance use the exchange rate of the day when a given loan was taken out and convert it to euros. He added however that this is a matter for the finance minister and banks.

While the government is expected to broach the issue as it continues with its working meeting on 2015 priorities on Wednesday, coalition SocDems deputy group head Matjaž Han said the problem will be debated within the coalition.

Han feels the debt holders need to be helped but not in way that would mean additional costs for taxpayers.

Opposition ZaAB deputy group head Jani Möderndorfer meanwhile said that contrary to the Croatian government, Slovenia's is constrained in this field by the Constitution and legislative provisions.

"In any case the debt holders need to be aware of one thing. They took out the loan when they did because it was cheaper than a euro loan," Möderndorfer said.

The Croatian government has proposed to parliament that the franc-kuna exchange rate be set at 1:6.39 for year, during which a solution would be sought for converting the franc-denominated debt.

In Hungary, where almost a million people have franc-referenced loans, the government already fixed the exchange rate for debt-repayment purposes in 2011, when the value of the Swiss currency in relation to the forint increased by almost 50%.


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