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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 13-10-21

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] SYRIZA on gov't stance before troika
  • [02] Georgiadis: 'Patients will have to pay if they choose patent over generic drugs'
  • [03] Greek public deficit at 9 pct, public debt at 156.9 pct in 2012, Eurostat reports
  • [04] Achieving primary surplus 'gives us choices', cabinet gen. secretary tells Vima FM

  • [01] SYRIZA on gov't stance before troika

    The government is trapped in the memorandum policy of austerity and destruction, main opposition SYRIZA said on Monday, adding that whatever leaks to the press about so-called negotiating with the troika of lenders to Greece cannot reverse the subordination of Greece to its lenders and the memorandum's commitments.

    In an announcement, the party said that there can be no negotiation when the core of the memorandum's policy - namely the austerity and the dissolution of labour rights - is not challenged.

    "The real change in the policy applied means the reversal of the memorandums within the framework of a real negotiation, aiming at a European arrangement to repay the debt and support growth," it said. "That's something that German Chancellor Angela Merkel's obedient pupils do not want to and cannot do, becoming every day that passes more unreliable and isolated not only in Greece but abroad as well," it added.

    [02] Georgiadis: 'Patients will have to pay if they choose patent over generic drugs'

    ANA-MPA -- Health Minister Adonis Georgiadis on Monday referred to the generic medicine vs the patent drug option available to patients under public health insurance coverage and to the increased contribution they will have to pay if they choose the patent drugs instead of the generic, a measure effective as of today.

    In an interview with ANA-MPA Web TV, he said that public health services provider EOPYY "will give to patients good medicine for which they will pay only half of the contribution toward its cost if they opt for it".

    "If the patients choose a less expensive medicine, compared with the reference price, they will pay half the contribution, namely, 12.5 pct from 25 pct," he said.

    "But if they choose the expensive patent drug because they think - and not the medical scientists - that it is better, then they will have to bear the cost of their choice," the health minister said, adding that "if they want to be extravagant they should pay the cost".

    According to Georgiadis, the measure will correspond to 150 million euros in annual savings for EOPYY.

    Responding to a relevant question on whether the amount of 1.5 billion euros in state funding will be earmarked for EOPYY allowing it to repay part of its overdue debts to pharmacists and other health services providers dated before December 31, 2011, he said that the organization's debts are being covered by the state.

    [03] Greek public deficit at 9 pct, public debt at 156.9 pct in 2012, Eurostat reports

    BRUSSELS - Greece's public deficit was running at 9 percent of GDP in 2012, while the country's public debt came to 156.9 percent of GDP in 2012, according to figures released by Eurostat on Monday.

    On a European-wide basis, Eurostat's figures record a reduction of public deficits but an increase in public debt both in the Eurozone and the 28 EU member-states.

    [04] Achieving primary surplus 'gives us choices', cabinet gen. secretary tells Vima FM

    Speaking to the local radio station Vima FM on Monday, cabinet general secretary Panagiotis Baltakos stressed that achieving a primary surplus was the paramount goal, to which the government was directing the bulk of its efforts.

    "The troika and the memorandum are a 'black' page in the history of the country and the entire effort underway is for us to stand on our feet and be able to get rid of them as quickly as possible. Everything is being done to achieve a primary surplus. Without it we are erased from the map. With it we can pay salaries and pensions and we have choices. Without a surplus, we have no choice," he said.

    Baltakos noted that the country now appeared to be on the way to achieving this goal, which would create other options that were not available before.

    "Consequently, and based on the abilities that [Prime Minister Antonis Samaras] has shown until now - for we should not forget that he has been governing the country for a year and a half with 29 percent and achieved things that other prime ministers could not imagine, never mind achieve, with 44 percent - I think that everything is possible," he added.

    Baltakos noted that the troika came to Greece as a result of actions and policies implemented over decades, adding that it was not a question of pinning the blame on one side or the other.

    "What is certain is that we brought [the troika] here ourselves and we will force it to leave by achieving our goals. This is what's needed," he stressed.

    On the prospect of early elections, the cabinet general secretary underlined that there was no such intention and that the government wanted to run to the end of its four-year term in 2016. He did not rule out the possibility of early elections as a political "accident," however, and he refused to speculate on the possible outcome of the European elections in May.

    "The government has a four-year horizon - as the prime minister has said. This is reasonable. First growth and then elections. No one is a fool to hold elections in the midst of this sort of crisis. It's not good for the country nor for the one holding elections. And if the troika insists on this, so much the worse for them," he added.

    Baltakos also appeared confident that the prime minister will be able to resist the troika's demands and pressures, especially once the country achieved a primary surplus and had more options. He emphasised once again that Samaras had led what was possible the most difficult prime ministerial term ever to exist, governing Greece with 29 percent during one of the deepest crises since the foundation of the Greek state.


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