Banks will have to issue new repayment schedules, where the principal of the loan due will be paid by consumers in equal installments over the entire crediting period, explained, on Wednesday, the general director of the National Authority for Consumer Protection (ANPC), Paul Anghel.
“I would like to say that I split this report of finding the contravention into two stages. The first stage would be opposite what happens from now on with credits, with the products they offer to consumers and what the financial-banking institution must do. We even got it in order and we say this: this is how it is required to issue new repayment schedules, where the principal of the loan due must be paid by consumers in equal installments over the entire lending period, in relation to the interest related to the loan, so that average consumers to be able to benefit from equality between the parties to the contract, but also for the existence of contractual balance, so that consumers can make an informed trading decision and anticipate any misleading cost or calculation method”, said Paul Anghel.
He explained that the provision refers to the products that will be offered from the date of issuing the order to stop the deceptive practices.
“What happens to the ongoing ones? The lawyer is right here, that financial and banking institutions have already contacted us and told us: ‘Sir, what do we have to do concretely to enter legality?’. We are not interested in going in, challenging the minutes. And there are quite a few, I say, institutions that have proceeded in this way. And I said that there is thesis number two, if you want, I will quote it: it is required that the financial-banking economic operator order the restoration of the contractual balance in its ongoing contracts, then carry out a resettlement of the contractual benefits by restructuring the monthly installment in a fair formula, so as to comply with the provisions of paragraph 1, which I told you about earlier, regarding the establishment of equal installments of the principal due, giving the consumer the opportunity to opt out by providing proof in this regard”, said Paul Angel.
For his part, the lawyer Adrian Cuculis stated that some banking institutions have started calling their clients to negotiations.
Anghel emphasized that banking institutions comply with ordinances 50 and 52, but the problem in question is that of the interest rate.
“So it’s not that ordinance 50 or 52 is not respected. Ordinance 50 or 52 is respected. I say again that it provides for restitution in equal installments or in decreasing installments. It’s perfectly ok. The problem is how you, a professional, play with the consumer’s mind and make him choose a product in a certain situation, in which he is vulnerable. Why is it vulnerable? Because he wants to purchase goods, whether we are talking about immovable goods or whether we are talking about movable goods. Sometimes there is a possibility that they will not receive the respective credit and not fulfill their dream of purchasing the respective property”, said Paul Anghel.
According to him, eight other banks were sanctioned.
“We have been asked many times why we did not sanction the other banks as well. At this moment, the General Directorate of Control and the Services of Financial Products and Services has completed the remaining eight reports of infringements against eight other economic and financial banking operators and certainly in the next period reports will be made to Mr. President, to the commission and will be forwarded to the other eight financial-banking institutions in Romania”, he claimed.
The National Authority for Consumer Protection (ANPC) recently fined 11 banks on the local market, on the grounds that it identified misleading commercial practices regarding the method of calculating rates.
“ANPC has identified deceptive commercial practices committed by banking economic operators regarding the method of calculating rates, by the fact that on the repayment schedule, the rate was composed, in the first years, of 25% principal and 75% interest. Through this method of calculation, consumers were, in fact, paying mostly interest. In order to be able to restore the contractual balance, in addition to the contraventional sanction, i.e. 11 fines worth 550,000 lei, the ANPC commissioners proposed the measure of issuing new repayment schedules, both for ongoing and future loans, where the principal the credit owed to be paid by consumers in equal installments, over the entire crediting period, in relation to the interest related to the credit”, declared for Agerpres the general director of ANPC, Paul Anghel.
The 11 banks are: ING Bank, First Bank, Credite Europe Bank, OTP Bank, Alpha Bank, Banca Transilvania, Raiffeisen Bank, BCR, Patria Bank, Unicredit Bank, BRD Groupe Societe Generale.
Source: Cotidianul RO by www.cotidianul.ro.
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