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AKEL on the “Housing for All” seminar organised by the AKEL delegation and GUE/NGL Group in the European Parliament



30 May 2023, AKEL C.C. Press Office, Nicosia

A seminar took place yesterday in Nicosia within the framework of the campaign organised by AKEL, together with EDON Youth and the Left Group in the European Parliament.

During his address, the General Secretary of the Central Committee of AKEL, Stefanos Stefanou, presenting AKEL’s proposals on housing policy, stressed that a coherent and targeted state housing policy needs to be elaborated in order to lay the foundations for effectively confronting the problem.

In his own contribution, AKEL MEP Giorgos Georgiou referred in particular to the issue of primary homes and small commercial premises, especially to AKEL’s initiative to raise before the European Commission the problems citizens face due to the existing legal framework, the problems arising from unfair clauses and the violation of the right of borrowers to seek justice. Furthermore, AKEL MEP Giorgos Georgiou pointed out that the answers given by Marianne Thyssen Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis and Didier Reynders European Commissioner for Justice concluded that the European directives were not implemented by the previous government, in flagrant violation of the rights of borrowers and with Cyprus facing the possibility of sanctions being imposed.

In her own contribution, Françoise De Smedt, Member of the National Council of the Workers’ Party of Belgium (PTB/PVDA) and Member of the Brussels Parliament, outlined the challenges facing Belgium in the field of housing policy, pointing out that there are two principal means to solve this social problem: intervention on the part of the State to produce more social housing and, at the same time, the regulation of rents in the private market.

Regarding the consequences of the housing problem on young PEOPLE, Iakovos Tofaris, Central Organizational Secretary of the EDON Youth organisation, pointed out that young people often face the dilemma of whether to create a family or to acquire their own house, He also referred to cases of students forced to abandon their studies either because of the high cost of rents in the city where they study, or they choose not to study at the university where they were admitted to because of the lack of access to quality and dignified housing. I. Tofari noted that the housing problem in the way it has been evolved in recent years will have an impact on the very character of society if timely and substantial measures are not taken.

At the end of the presentations, interventions were made by the President of the Cyprus Land Development Corporation (CLDC), the Director General of the Housing Financing Agency, the representative of the Minister of Interior, the representative of the Cyprus Scientific and Technical Chamber (ΕΤΕΚ), as well as other attendees. A common finding was made as regards the magnitude of the problem and the need for the formulation of a coherent housing policy with strategic planning.

The campaign will conclude with the meeting of the General Secretary of the Central Committee of AKEL, Stefanos Stefanos with the Minister of Interior in the period immediately ahead, where AKEL will outline the conclusions that have been drawn from the discussion at the seminar, as well as presenting the Party’s entire set of proposals for housing policy to the competent Minister.



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