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Brazil: a bank for the poor

Written by Alain Pilote on Friday, 01 August 2003. Posted in News

Luiz Inacio Lula da SilvaOn June 25, 2003, Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva announced the creation of the Popular Bank, aimed at improving the availability of credit for the poor, and reducing sky-high lending rates. 25 million Brazilians who live on the minimum wage (240 reals, or 80 US dollars per month) are excluded from the system, since they have access neither to a bank account nor to loans. President da Silva wants to keep a 2% interest rate on loans to the poorest, so they can purchase at least the basic necessities. The day before, he had denounced credit agencies that ask up to 323% yearly interest from people who want to borrow 200 reals ($70 U.S.).

About the Author

Alain Pilote

Alain Pilote

Alain Pilote has been the editor of the English edition of MICHAEL for several years. Twice a year we organize a week of study of the social doctrine of the Church and its application and Mr. Pilote is the instructor during these sessions.