What society can develop its economy when financial institutions charge, on average, 439% interest per year for the payment of credit operations, with some even imposing 992% per year? Such extortion with obscene numbers, it is worth emphasizing, takes place in a country with inflation of 3.99% in the last 12 months and a drop projection, while the reference interest rate is 13.25%. More than that, since the beginning of the Lula government, all risk rating agencies in the world have improved Brazil’s rating and highlighted the positive expectations for the short and medium term economic scenario.
I am the rapporteur for the Desenrola program in the Chamber, a request from President Lula to Minister Fernando Haddad, and this is a perfect opportunity for us to put an end to this abuse of the financial system. There is no point in recovering the credit of individuals and reducing defaults, in addition to expanding the supply of available credit, if we continue to allow this excrescence that does not exist anywhere on the planet.
:: Revolving, payroll and credit: women report the impact of high interest rates on the family budget ::
This goal is so peaceful that not even self-styled “liberals” have the courage to speak of state intervention. They know, among other things, that even in England, the birthplace of liberalism, there is a regulation that limits credit card interest. In the English case, the rule states that any debt collection may be charged at a maximum of 100%, that is, once the nominal amount due.
I put this proposal in the opinion of the bill (PL 2685/22), authored by Deputy Elmar Nascimento (União-BA), which will deal with Development and should be debated and voted on by the plenary of the Chamber this week.
According to our proposal, however, the rule will only come into force, however, if the market does not present a self-regulation suggestion to the National Monetary Council. The solution to be suggested by the market must be reasonable and fair and, in addition, must be analyzed and approved by the CMN within 90 days after the enactment of the law. If this is not done, the limiting rule I described above would automatically apply.
:: Government announces measures to expand credit and doubles amount that cannot be pawned ::
This project gains even more relevance at a time when the country is poring over the tax reform debate, which has already been partially approved by Congress, but needs to advance a lot in the second stage, which should focus on progressive taxation measures, especially on the so-called “upstairs” of the Brazilian population, the richest 10%.
Ending abusive interest rates is a demand from society and an imperative of the Brazilian State. The end of this extortion is to remove the noose from the neck of our economy, both of individuals and families, as well as of the productive sector that is committed to the growth of the country in a socially fair and balanced way.
*Alencar Santana is a federal deputy (PT-SP), deputy leader of the Lula government in the Chamber.
** This is an opinion article. The author’s view does not necessarily express the editorial line of the newspaper Brasil de Fato.
Editing: Thalita Pires