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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 12-07-27

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PM meets with Barroso in Athens

  • [01] PM meets with Barroso in Athens

    AMNA/ Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Thursday received visiting European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso for talks focusing on the government's efforts to overcome Greece's debt crisis. In statements afterward, the Greek premier underlined that his government was determined to make essential changes and reforms.

    Barroso, while expressing support for Greece and the Greek people, at the same time asked that the Greek side uphold the agreements and commitments undertaken.

    The European Commission president acknowledged the sacrifices made by Greeks but stressed that immediate reforms were the only way to overcome the crisis without further harming the weakest members of society.

    He was critical of delays in implementing reforms, saying it was time for words to stop and actions to begin, adding that Europe wanted Greece to stay in the Eurozone provided the commitments were met.

    The European Commission president also had criticism, however, for European officials making comments that caused problems for Greece, pointing out that "we are all in the same boat".

    Samaras, on his part, appeared determined to carry out changes and reforms, meeting the commitments undertaken by Greece, and assured Barroso that Greece will go ahead with sweeping privatisations and mergers of state organisations. He also promised changes in the investment environment and drastic action to curb both bureaucracy and tax evasion, as well as radical cuts in wasteful public-sector spending.

    During his talks with Barroso, Samaras said that he raised the issue of extending the fiscal consolidation period under the bailout programme and the measures that he discussed earlier with the other leaders in the three-party coalition government, PASOK president Evangelos Venizelos and Democratic Left (Dem.Ar) leader Fotis Kouvelis.

    At 8:30 p.m. Samaras is scheduled to host a working dinner with Barroso and his aides, government ministers, the head of the EU Task Force for Greece Horst Reichenbach and the European Commission's representative on the EU-IMF troika mission in Greece, Matthias Mors.

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