Today, Ministry of Finance announced the public call for one-off writing off of debts of the most vulnerable categories, and as of Monday, citizens will be able to submit applications

Skopje, 16th August 2014 (MIA) Today, Ministry of Finance announced the public call for one-off writing off of debts of the most vulnerable categories, and as of Monday, citizens will be able to submit applications in the centers for social work in the places in which they live and in those closest to their place of residence.

Thus, realization of the project for one-off writing off of debts of the most vulnerable categories of citizens practically started. By its realization, the Government will help to a great extent to the most vulnerable categories of citizens, who, due to the deteriorated financial conditions and consequences from the long-lasting European and global crisis, could not settle their liabilities on time. Thus, one of the most significant projects in the 2014-20-18 Government Program will be realized and one of the most significant promises made to the citizens, i.e. to the most vulnerable categories will be fulfilled, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Zoran Stavreski said at today’s press conference.

The citizens will submit the applications for writing-off the debts to the centers for social work in their place of residence within 30 days from the announcement of the call by the Ministry of Finance, and special commission will decide upon the applications.

Debts incurred as of 31st December 2013 inclusive will be written off, all on the basis of consumed electricity, thermal energy, credit cards, overdrafts of transaction accounts, consumer credits, as well as broadcasting fee. The measure, as Stavreski explained, includes unpaid debts for more than one year, and collection procedure should be initiated therefore Deputy Prime Minister Under said that under this measure, debts of the three most vulnerable categories of citizens, i.e. social assistance and permanent pecuniary assistance beneficiaries, unemployed persons actively seeking job for longer than 12 months and persons exposed to social risk due to death of spouse or disability or severe decease occurred in the last five years, are written off.

Practically, as of Monday, the citizens, should go to the centers for social work in their place of residence or to the one closest to their place of residence, where they should fill-in application in a form specially prepared for that purpose. Procedure is simple, the citizen should fill in basic data, his/her name and surname and the name and surname of his/her spouse, as well as the type of debt they have. The citizens should bring his/her ID and the ID of his/her spouse. They should sign statement, by which they would give consent, upon which the government institutions may, ex officio, provide all other necessary documents, so as for the procedure to be simpler for the citizens and so as for them not to be forced to wait at counters for getting the necessary documentation, Deputy Prime Minister Stavreski said.

This public call, as he said, follows the submission of written statements by he creditors for their involvement in the project.

Practically all bans in the Republic of Macedonia, EVN, ELEM Toplifikacija, MRTV, two saving houses, Notary Chamber and Chamber of Enforcement Agents are involved in the Project. There was great favourable reaction by the entities having claims by the citizens, wishing to be included in this Project. There will be procedure for signing agreements with all of them. In the meantime, Ministry of Finance, in cooperation with MLSP, on 14th August, organized one-day training for the employees in the centers for social work, to whom it was explained the manner in which the procedure should be carried and the manner according to which they should offer help to the citizens so as for the submission of application to be realized in the best possible manner. Commission that will decide upon the applications is also established, the necessary by-laws have been adopted, thus all conditions for start and successful project realization have been created, Stavreski said.

He expressed contentment from the favourable reaction by the companies for being part of the project, by pointing out that all those with whom previous discussion were held, before including the project in the Government Program, have been involved therein, thus all of them showing high level of social responsibility.

Entire procedure for writing off of debts of the most vulnerable categories of citizens is expected to be completed by November, and it is estimated to cover between 50,000 and 100,000 citizens, depending on how many people will apply.

In addition to the principal, interests, as well as costs for notaries public and enforcement officers, should be written off under this measure.

As regards the written-off debt, the creditors, i.e. the banks, EVN Toplifikacija (company for production and distribution of heat energy) will be entitled to tax credit in the amount of certain percentage of the debt, which will not be higher than 10% of the written-off debt.

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