Top EU official wants tougher stance on repossessions
A SENIOR representative from the European Commission has urged Irish banks to get tougher on repossessing homes.
Nigel Nagarajan, adviser on financial stability to the European Commission, said that Ireland's banks must start legal proceeding where suitable. "You can't have a situation where banks can't repossess," he said at a conference in Dublin.
"To get traction, banks will need to start to initiate legal proceedings where appropriate."
His comments are further proof that the EU-IMF troika wants Ireland to take a harder line when it comes to arrears.
Yesterday's announcement of new targets, which require banks to conclude agreements with 15pc of all customers in arrears over 90 days by the end of this year, was agreed with the troika as part of the country's exit from the bailout.
Mr Nagarajan said more repossessions would restore "payment discipline" among borrowers – implying that many are refusing to pay out of choice rather than necessity.
These remarks come despite uproar from consumer groups in response to similar claims recently made by AIB chief executive David Duffy.