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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 15-04-29

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Gov't vice president Dragasakis: A bridge agreement will be reached in early May
  • [02] We cannot agree on measures that kill the economy, Alt. Social Insurance Min Stratoulis says
  • [03] EU Commissioner Moscovici: Negotiations are not going fast enough

  • [01] Gov't vice president Dragasakis: A bridge agreement will be reached in early May

    ANA/MPA---The agreement with Greece's creditors should include a policy that will make the country viable, Government Vice President Yiannis Dragasakis on Wednesday said in statements to private radio 'Sto kokkino'.

    Dragasakis estimated that a bridge agreement will be reached in early May. "Today, we are seeking an agreement-solution. Not any agreement though. The agreement needs to be viable. After reaching a bridge agreement, the debate on the debt, the primary surplus, investments and the growth will start," he underlined.

    He added that "the bridge agreement is being sought within the framework of the February 20 Eurogroup's agreement. We are seeking a minimum agreement, let's call it like this, with actions that can be immediately implemented. We are struggling for an agreement that will give an immediate solution to the country's liquidity problem, which we have not created, but we inherited."

    He attributed the delay in the negotiations to the creditors change of stance and a suffocation mechanism with aim to put pressure on the government.

    Priority is given to the needs of the many, Dragasakis underlined, adding that if the government finds itself at an impasse, there is the solution of resorting to people.

    "We learn more things as time goes by and we are becoming more efficient," he stated while expressing optimism over an agreement with the country's partners and creditors.

    "The political negotiation group was the result of the experience gained all that period," he noted.

    [02] We cannot agree on measures that kill the economy, Alt. Social Insurance Min Stratoulis says

    ANA/MPA---Alternate Social Insurance Minister Dimitris Stratoulis on Wednesday in statements to MEGA TV lashed out at Greece's creditors on their demand not to implement the 100-installment settlement.

    "Do we have to surrender because we have run out of money and do we have to sign whatever they want? Is that the right tactics? This is a trap," Stratoulis stated.

    As he also said in Riga, Latvia, the partners raised the issue to Varoufakis while the settlement was already underway. He noted that the creditors disagree with the increase of minimum wage and they are asking for reductions in pensions, an increase in VAT on islands and the deregulation of mass layoffs, adding that the government remains committed to its red lines.

    "Pensions are not going to be reduced," Stratoulis reiterated and cleared out that if they insist on that, they have another plan. "We have a plan for any case, but when you are at the last phase of the negotiation, you do not reveal your plans."

    Referring to the possibility of a referendum, he argued that what matters now is to reach an agreement and not to hold a referendum. He estimated though that the issue will be solved politically.

    The minister underlined that there will be no austerity measures as a result of a difficult compromise as we cannot agree on measures that kill the economy.

    [03] EU Commissioner Moscovici: Negotiations are not going fast enough

    ANA/MPA---European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Pierre Moscovici stated on Wednesday that the talks between Greece and its lenders to reach an agreement are conducted "under better conditions" after the establishment of a political negotiation group by Athens, however he reiterated that "the negotiations are not going fast enough."

    "The negotiation is serious, taut and has advanced, but not fast enough and in an unsufficiently way," Moscovici told French BFM-TV, according to Reuters news agency. "A consistent, comprehensive and coherent reform programme should be set now on the table," he added.

    Referring to the new negotiation team, the European Commissioner stated "We have a team that it seems to be more coherent, that it seems to me more ready for reforms...but I want results. I believe that this negotiation that is now forming under better conditions has not been completed yet" he added noting that "there is an emergency".

    What is important, said Moscovici, is that Mr. Tsipras is taking back the negotiations himself and is sending to Brussels his people, trustworthy people who we can talk to" he said estimating that "from this point of view it is a good sign". He also noted that "EU wants Greece to remain in the eurozone' and stated that "there is not plan B, there is not other solution".


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