Prat de Comte offers work and home to families with children

Prat de Comte offers work and home to families with children

“The town is beautiful and quiet …” says Loli. Very calm. Too much even for its 170 neighbors. Prat de Comte is the smallest population center of the Terra Alta . Located between mountains, 200 meters from the Parc Natural dels Ports, 31 kilometers from Tortosa, 92 from Tarragona and 180 from Barcelona, ​​the population ages and the school works with the minimum number of students required by the Department of Education. But the town is not resigned and after several meetings the neighbors have decided to step forward and make an appeal: They look for families with children who want to settle in the town. In return, offer housing at a reasonable price-less than 200 euros, and put on the table several options to work: from managing the shelter -with capacity for fifty people- or cultivate land that they are willing to give the City Council and some individuals.

Families with children are sought. That they are not urbanites. Or that are willing to leave the city and settle in a rural environment. Couples with children who change shopping centers, traffic and agglomerations for a locality with two bars, a hostel and a store that sells a little of everything. “We can not offer much, but a house for very little money and all the facilities that are in our hands so that families come to live here … And with the times that run that can be very attractive for families who are like the rural way of life “, insists Joan Josep Malràs, the mayor of Prat de Comte .

The drop that has filled the glass has been the possibility that the school closes. Nerea and Rubén will finish primary in June. Next year they will start the course at the Gandesa institute, 22 kilometers from home. Without them, the Prat de Comte school will be at its limit. “If another family left, we would have to close it and a town without a school is, in the short term, a people without life,” says Malràs.

The matter has been raised in the town hall and in meetings with neighbors. “We make this appeal because we believe that we have to try everything, here we live well, we have Tortosa 20 minutes away by car”, insists the mayor. To attract new families to the municipality several job opportunities are offered. One of the options is the hostel of Ca la Jepa whose management has gone to auction. “Instead of being run by a company from Tortosa or another town, we would greatly appreciate the possibility that a family would be responsible for its operation, for our location next to the natural park, in summer and on weekends this is a business that can work, “says the mayor.

Another possibility is, for example, the commercialization of the liquor that has been sold for 15 years in the town: “Until now we have done it to finance the village festivities, but it could become a business if someone wants to promote it,” he adds. Malràs, who also offers the possibility to the future inhabitants to dedicate themselves to cultivate plots that the City Council and some owners are willing to give up. “We also lend to intercede in the purchase of land or housing,” maintains the mayor, who offers a three-bedroom apartment, two bathrooms, kitchen and dining room for less than 200 euros per month.

The daughter of Loli is the girl who attends sixth grade. “It would be a pity if they closed the school, the town would do a little more well, people get older …” he says. Last year there were 164 inhabitants registered in Prat de Comte , of whom 17 were under 14 years old, 96 between 15 and 64 years old and half a hundred neighbors over 65 years During the last years, in the town they have seen how the doctor retires with a place and in his place they have a doctor one hour and a half a day. He has seen how the bank branch was closed and the postal service was in danger. The store is still open, but its owner – who inherited it from her mother – is 63 years old.

In contrast, the consistory has worked to offer maximum services to prevent young people from leaving: “We have internet and natural gas, the information point of the natural park and the pool, and we plan to make a paddle because the youth they ask for it and to offer more attractions to the people who visit us on weekends and during the holidays, “says Malràs. The goal now is to keep the school. “With four or five families, the situation would change and if they come more … much better!”, Concludes the mayor.

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Economy / Finance.- Laboral Kutxa achieves a profit of 76 million in the first semester, 4.3% more

the end of the first half of this year, which represents an increase of 4.3% compared to

the end of the first half of this year, which represents an increase of 4.3% compared to

In a statement, its leaders have stressed that Laboral Kutxa has continued to “improve results” in a general scenario of “high demand”, since the banking business during the first half of the year has developed “in the same parameters of recent times “, with the interest rates” refugees below zero and exerting a strong pressure on the margins “.

These results, they have indicated, have been achieved thanks to “a notable commercial boost” of its sales network, which has been accompanied by a “weighted risk management” and an “efficient containment” of the expenses.

The sum of all this has allowed the Basque credit cooperative to increase its results by 4.3%, reaching a consolidated net profit of 76 million euros at the end of June, with a return on equity of ROE of 7, 59%

“the anomalous and persistent situation” of negative interest rates. As he explained, the fall in the cost of deposits in recent years can not offset the decline in interest on loans, which affects the generation of typical bank income.

The interest margin has added 125 million, 1.9% below the same period of 2017, where “the mortgage portfolio linked to the Euribor is particularly considered”, have pointed from Laboral Kutxa.

The “good” performance of the chapter of commissions, which increased by 6.8%, has allowed to place the basic margin at 175.4 million euros, 0.5% above the figure reached in June 2017.

The gross margin, on the other hand, reached 210.7 million euros, representing a year-on-year decrease of 7%. However, the Basque entity has specified, if a comparison is made in homogeneous terms applying the current accounting rules IFRS9 to account for equity gains, the evolution of the gross margin has been positive, with an increase of 6.3%.

write-downs, impairments and taxes, the consolidated net profit in the first half of 2018 has increased by 4.3% to 75.7 million euros, prior to the appropriation corresponding to Obra Social funds.

Among other data, Laboral Kutxa has remarked that the rate of delinquency has continued to fall to stand at 5%, “very far” from the levels of the average deposit entities, which stood at 6.70% at the close of may.

Along the same lines, the entity continues to occupy, in the words of its managers, “a very well-known place in terms of solvency” and the capital ratio of maximum quality CET1 (Common Equity Tier 1), which “determines the strength” of the financial entities, stands at 17.85%.

In this context, the relationship between deposits and credits on its balance sheet gives Laboral Kutxa “an excellent liquidity situation”, as he highlighted. The LTD (Loans to Deposits) ratio stands at 79.8% and the short-term liquidity ratio LCR (Liquidity Coverage Ratio), which measures the entity’s ability to meet its short-term commitments, sits in 400.7%, when the ratio established as a reference is 100%.

The set of resources managed by Laboral Kutxa has increased 1,368 million in 12 months and reaches 21,676 million euros, representing an increase of 6.7%.

The main growths on the balance sheet have been concentrated in sight accounts, which have increased by 11.3%. As regards the off-balance sheet figures, the evolution of investment funds stands out, with a net increase of 20.7% since June 2017. As explained by the Basque cooperative, the increase has mainly focused on funds investments of the portfolio advisory service.

The growth of activity in the first half of the year has been especially reflected in the granting of credit. In the segment of individuals, the volume of mortgages formalized in the semester has increased by 14.1%. For its part, the formalized balance of consumer loans in the first six months of the year has grown by 4.5% with respect to the same period of the previous year.

In the commercial sector, the volume of loan, lease and loan formalizations granted to companies has grown 11% with respect to the volume registered in June 2017.

As indicated by Laboral Kutxa, the amortization rate continues to exceed the new production and the volume of total loans to customers falls slightly to 13,372 million euros, 0.7% in the year-on-year comparison. This evolution, he pointed out, is a reflection of the process of reducing household debt, where the fall in the stock of debt persists.



In the first half of the year, the insurance business posted a total of 19.8 million euros, which represents an increase of 14.1% compared to 2017, mainly due to the growth in premiums and the control of expenses.

On the other hand, Laboral Kutxa has 380,000 active customers of its online banking. The mobile terminal is the one with the highest growth, above the personal computer, which has been “favored” by the launch of the responsive online banking model, which adapts to any device, he explained.

Specifically, in the comparison of private customers, excluding business customers, the number of users who use the mobile device is almost 20% higher than those who use the computer.

This evolution of the mobile channel is also observed in the hiring of the DISPON loans (pre-granted instantly and without paperwork), in which the number of loans contracted through the mobile already exceeds those of any other channel.

As for the exclusive payment application of Laboral Kutxa, LKPay, which enables two payment solutions, P2P with Bizum and NFC mobile payment, the 70,000 users have already been exceeded.

The Postamail service, which avoids the use of paper postal mail for the flow of communications between the entity and its clientele, already has 500,000 users. On the other hand, the alert service is close to 350,000 users, 47% of them through app notifications.

From Laboral Kutxa, have stressed that, from a qualitative point of view, the most important release until June is Argitu, the new online platform to self-manage personal finances that helps control revenue and expenses or the evolution of savings, among others . Likewise, an online charge for home insurance has been launched.