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Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-02-11

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PM Papandreou says Greece will succeed
  • [02] ND leader strongly criticises PM

  • [01] PM Papandreou says Greece will succeed

    Prime Minister George Papandreou, addressing a press conference at the end of the informal European Union summit in Brussels on Thursday and referring to the EU leaders' agreement to assist Greece so that it can weather its current economic crisis, said that "our partners assessed and ascertained our will to change, we convinced following a great effort and it is necessary for us to continue. I declare that we shall succeed."

    Asked what would be given in exchange for the "triple supervision" for the implementation of the Stability Programme on the part of the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF and the taking of the necessary additional measures, Papandreou said that "the fact that they are supervising us today is the result of the policies of the past years and of the complete absence of credibility. We have no problem: The transparency for what we are doing and what we are implementing is the best reply to every one who may doubt that we have the will to implement what we have to implement, to take the decisions that we must take in order to achieve our goals."

    Called on to clarify if the "supplementary measures apart from the Stability Programme will be imposed by the Commission, the ECB and the IMF, if we do not observe the programme or another wave shall follow within the Programme," the prime minister said that "the Commission with ECOFIN and the Eurogroup are responsible for the decisions, the others are assisting. Secondly, the Programme itself says that if along the way the goals are not achieved we are ready to take the necessary and additional measures."

    Papandreou termed as important the decision of the EU and of the eurozone for coordinated action if necessary, to secure stability, while whatever decision, as he said, constitutes at the same time a clear message to the markets and to possible profiteers as well.

    "We shall respond to the message proceeding with the necessary great reforms in our country and be certain that we shall succeed," he said.

    "Our will is also expressed in the Stability, Growth and Reconstruction Programme and the additional measures that we took, while we shall do everything that is necessary to achieve our goals which are a decrease in the deficit by 4 units in 2010, the country's entry into a new growth model with the simultaneous protection of the weaker," he added.

    The prime minister also mentioned that during the informal summit Europe's growth prospects were also discussed through the axes of innovation, education and digital society, the employment of skills and the combatting of poverty, and green growth with a viable economy at the same time.

    CAPTION: Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou addressing a press conference at an informal summit of European Union heads of state and government, in Brussels on Thursday. (Photo by EPA)

    [02] ND leader strongly criticises PM

    Main opposition New Democracy (ND) party leader Antonis Samaras, in the wake of measures taken for the economy and European Union's support for Greece, criticised Prime Minister George Papandreou after the press conference he gave in Brussels on Thursday, while stressing that he considers it positive that European support shields Greek bonds from attacks by profiteers.

    "Mr. Papandreou would do well not to remove any responsibilities from both the past PASOK governments, as well as his own unprecedented delaying for four months (since October)," Samaras said.

    The ND leader also criticised the measures taken by Papandreou's PASOK government, stressing that "after delays, it is taking measures now only to curb the deficit and not to boost the market and it does not give the economy necessary "breathers" of support."

    He further assessed that without strengthening measures the recession that will result will be very deep and the deficits will not decrease and added "our message to the government is: Take strengthening measures now."

    Samaras pointed out that the problem is "for us to cut extravagances. Not to cut from vital needs. Unfortunately, the government appeared, initially at least, not to do this distinction. To level everything and to cut from everywhere."

    Samaras also criticised the prime minister on another point in his statements: "The ease with which the prime minister- due to supervision- claims that a part of our sovereignty is being taken from us, is creating grave scepticism. Evidently, he does not realise the gravity and the consequences of his words."

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