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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 14-03-30

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] FinMin: SYRIZA motion aimed at delaying last tranche of loans
  • [02] Alternate FinMin Staikouras says 2014 fiscal targets have been surpassed

  • [01] FinMin: SYRIZA motion aimed at delaying last tranche of loans

    ANA-MPA -- Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras attacked main opposition Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) and its leader Alexis Tsipras in Parliament on Sunday, saying the no-confidence vote against him was actually a failed attempt to stall a discussion on disbursing loans to Greece at the Eurogroup in two days time.

    He accused the main opposition of fighting a "now lost rearguard action" and attempting a Parliamentary coup designed to prevent the disbursement of the last tranche of bailout loans in May, when the European elections will be held.

    Noting that the government had an appropriate reply to those who chose populism, the minister emphasised "that we must not overlook the fact that the country's efforts are being recognised internationally."

    He also rejected SYRIZA's argument that the reprivatisation of banks - via their sale to the Financial Stability Fund at prices lower than the acquisition price - was damaging to state interests, noting that "this is done all over the world".

    "Mr. Tsipras invested in disaster. The new opinion polls have frightened him...With stability and responsibility, we have led the economy out of the crisis," Stournaras said.

    Defending the reprivatisation measures, the minister claimed that it would be impossible to attract private investors at prices greater than 1.25 euros per share:

    "Does he believe that it's [in the state's interests] for private investors to participate in share capital increases? Isn't it in the state's interests to keep the HFSF's 11 billion euros untouched for use in buying back debt? What does he want? For people to take their deposits and leave?" Stournaras said, though in the absence of the main opposition, which had walked out of the debate.

    The minister pointed out that this would reduce the participation of tax-payers to a minimum and that the law allowed the sale of shares below the purchase prices, noting that the same had happened with Piraeus Bank and Alpha Bank and accusing Tsipras of "not knowing how to lose".

    "He is trying to undermine the exit from the crisis with obvious lies and threats," he said.

    [02] Alternate FinMin Staikouras says 2014 fiscal targets have been surpassed

    ANA-MPA -- Alternate Finance Minister Christos Staikouras, addressing the Parliament Plenum on the omnibus bill on Sunday, expressed certainty that the country's fiscal targets for 2014 will not only be achieved but they shall also be surpassed by 525 million euros, as much as the amount of the social dividend. The minister also criticised those who supported disaster scenarios in the past, and the main opposition party in particular, stressing that the positive results denied them that are now being recognised internationally for the country. Staikouras spoke of the government's time-consuming and tough negotiations that resulted in our partners living up to their commitments. Lastly, he spoke of a bill that includes structural reforms to boost growth, support enterprises and increase employment, stressing that "the process of change is tough and slow but will have a positive outcome".
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