Nadia Calviño, economic vice president of the Government, goes on to attack the bank. Once again, after the multiple clashes that she had with the sector in 2021. On this occasion due to financial exclusion, especially of the elderly, who see how little by little they are left with fewer possibilities of being attended in person. The consequence for many of them who are not familiar with the technology: expulsion from the system.
The economic manager of the Executive has summoned the three employers of the union to scold them for this situation. Calviño has attended the meeting; the Secretary of State for the Economy, Gonzalo García de Andrés; the General Secretary of the Treasury, Carlos Cuerpo; and the heads of the AEB, CECA and Unacc, José María Roldán, José María Méndez and Cristina Freijanes, respectively.
The meeting was also attended by the Bank of Spain's Director of Conduct for Entities, Fernando Tejada.
At the meeting, as reported by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, they have jointly addressed “The urgency and importance of guaranteeing the financial inclusion of the entire society, including our elders”. Thus, Calviño has transferred his concern about financial exclusion to the banking system and to the supervisor and has requested information on the effectiveness of the measures that the banking sector has already put in place.
This situation occurs just a few days after a Valencian, Charles Saint John, 78 years old, has collected hundreds of thousands of signatures for the face-to-face attention of the bank. Massive support for her claim that people in financial institutions attend to her.
Banking, for its part, has been denying the term financial exclusion for some time, since anyone has access to the same services through technology. Regarding the closing of offices, the sector has always justified itself with the fact that they cannot maintain branches at a loss in places where the influx is minimal and where digital trends have changed everything. For this reason, they urge their clients to train in digital channels, since they do not deny the digital gap that exists and that is why they also develop training campaigns for the elderly. Financial sources point out that the sector is always willing to help to avoid the difficulties that older people may have and that banks have carried out actions to close the digital divide.
From the CECA they have issued a statement after the meeting. Sources from the institution point out that its press release is as a complement to the Economy one, although the ministry's is a slap on the wrist. «The Spanish banking entities have adopted actions to face the demographic and technological challenges of the country. Specifically, for the senior segment, these are initiatives to improve the personal service system, expand the portfolio of products and services, adapt ATMs and digital channels, and financial education programs," he says, emphasizing what the sector has done to bring technology closer to the elderly.
It is not the first time that Calviño jumps against the bench. In the wing of United We Can it is common to see attacks on the sector, but not so much so among the socialists. The economic vice president waged a difficult war to win in the first part of the year for the ERE and salaries.
The minister attacked the sector, especially Caixabank, for making massive layoffs of workers when managers in the union are receiving millionaire salaries. That even led to the FROB, which represents the State, voting against the salary of José Ignacio Goirigolzarri as president of Caixabank.