Asset management firms set eyes on unpaid bills of indebted Turkish citizens

Asset management companies, which have already been de-facto managing the non-performing loans of the ten largest banks in Turkey, have now set their eyes on unpaid telecommunication, natural gas and water bills, according to an exclusive report in daily Dünya. 

These companies manage some one-third of the 62 billion Turkish Liras in bad loans distributed by lenders, said Hilmi Güvenal, the deputy president of the Asset Management Companies Association. 

"The debt of the citizens is not limited to debit and credit cards. We want to manage the receivables of the telecommunications debts linked to the BTK [Information and Communications Technologies Authority] and energy companies linked to the EPDK [Turkey's energy watchdog]," he said. 

Some 21 billion liras worth of bad bank loans have been acquired by 11 asset management companies since 2008 and some 3 billion liras have been paid to the banks, as they have collected 2.5 billion liras, he noted. 

"There are 1.5 million individuals in the portfolios of asset management companies," the executive said, revealing the number of Turks having large difficulties in paying their loans to banks. 

"We have saved some 500,000 customers from indebted status," he added. 

In 2014 alone, banks sold 6 million liras worth of loans only in capital money which excluded interests and fees, which refers to some 20 percent of the delayed collections, according to the data provided by Güvenal.

According to data from the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK), the non-performing loans of the banks stand at 41.7 billion liras, not 62.7 billion liras, thanks to another 21-billion-lira portion sold to asset management firms. 

"If the calculation was made over [62...

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