Confederation of Labor Demands Debt Solutions Skip to content

Confederation of Labor Demands Debt Solutions

By Iceland Review

President of the Confederation of Labor (ASÍ) Gylfi Arnbjörnsson said that the government has to react to the problem of household debt if stability is to be achieved. ASÍ is demanding that the reorganization of debt be prioritized.

President of ASÍ Gylfi Arnbjörnsson. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.

“If this isn’t taken care of, we won’t be open for discussion,” Arnbjörnsson told Fréttabladid.

Leaders of the government parties, the Social Democrats and the Left-Greens, met with the representatives of labor unions, employers’ unions, farmers and municipalities yesterday where ASÍ presented a nine-point plan on emergency measures and future solutions.

ASÍ wants to establish a consultancy office on household finances and hire 50 financial advisors where people who face payment problems can seek assistance. The plan also includes the immediate establishment of regulations on the execution of debt relief and that an emergency fund for households is created.

Minister of Finance Steingrímur J. Sigfússon said yesterday’s meetings had been very useful. “There is considerable will everywhere in society to move towards stability. The wage issues are also included, state finances and other matters.”

In regard to the absolute attitude of ASÍ, Sigfússon said that it had been discussed at the meeting how important the coming weeks are, commenting, “We hope that soon we will have land in sight in many difficult cases, for example the reorganization of the banking system.”

Chairman of the Confederation of Icelandic Employers (SA) Thór Sigfússon said the employment market is screaming for actions, most importantly a considerable lowering of the policy this week.

“An insignificant decrease […] would be an immense shock to us. It would be a testament that people don’t realize at all how harmful it is for the community if the employment market is left in deep freeze. That would cause irreparable damage,” Thór Sigfússon stated.

The Central Bank of Iceland will make a new decision on the policy rate tomorrow.

Click here to read about the last policy rate decision.

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