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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 15-07-21

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Pavlopoulos: Greece's course in EU and eurozone non-negotiable
  • [02] Fighting corruption will be 'number one priority', Quick tells ANA-MPA
  • [03] Negotiations on Greek bailout to begin once prior actions are passed, gov't says

  • [01] Pavlopoulos: Greece's course in EU and eurozone non-negotiable

    President of Republic Prokopis Pavlopoulos on Tuesday sent a clear message that Greece's place is in the European Union and the eurozone.

    Addressing Cypriot students at the Presidential Palace, he stressed that any other option would be economically, socially and nationally destructive.

    "The safest way for ending the nightmare of memorandum is the united front -which should be shielded whatever the cost - of those democratic forces that guarantee the uncompromising development of the country within the European Union and in the eurozone," Pavlopoulos stated.

    [02] Fighting corruption will be 'number one priority', Quick tells ANA-MPA

    ANA-MPA -- Fighting corruption and finding ways to offset the harsh measures imposed by Greece's creditors will be the coalition government's top priority, Deputy Minister of State Terens Quick told the ANA-MPA in an interview on Tuesday. "The number one priority is for people to understand that this government is not linked to any interest groups, that we are not the people of the interests, and that we can therefore crack down on corruption without any qualms," Quick said. Put in charge of coordinating government action against tax evasion, Quick said a major area of focus will be the fuel trade. "At this moment, the Greek state does not know how many petrol stations there are. They do not know how many fuel tanks over 5.0 tonnes there are. Not only in homes but also in businesses and at the refineries. We do not know where the fuel storage areas are. All this must be put into some kind of order," he said. Estimates for the revenue lost for fuel sales ranged from 1.0 - 5.5 billion euros, Quick pointed out, while the state had so far installed inflow-outflow systems only at retail level and nowhere else. "I have already prepared the relevant recommendation to present at a new meeting that will be held with the minister against corruption, Panagiotis Nikoloudis, on Friday," he said, stressing that the present government would abolish the 'immunity' previously afforded to those evading taxes. A second priority, he added, was to show people that the government was striving to find counter-measures or alternatives to offset harsh austerity. "It is the first time that the Greek government has been allowed, on the basis of this agreement, to reverse a law that has been passed and replace it with something else that is deemed suitably equivalent," Quick pointed out. The deputy minister said the government was also ready to start checking thousands of bank deposits abroad, in Switzerland and elsewhere, in order to discover money that had not been declared. "Whoever has not declared [their deposits] will be fined 40 pct. Whoever declares them will pay 21 pct to be cleared. In this way we do not sanctify tax evasion but only locate the money and, of course, bring in revenues," Quick said. The full interview in Greek is available on the ANA-MPA website.

    [03] Negotiations on Greek bailout to begin once prior actions are passed, gov't says

    ANA-MPA -- Negotiations between Greece and the institutions will begin as soon as Parliament votes for the prior actions demanded by Greece's creditors and will run until August 20, government spokeswoman Olga Gerovasili said on Tuesday. She said these prior actions will not include the changes in taxation for farmers. The prior actions demanded of Greece in the July 12 agreement between Eurozone leaders, in order for negotiations to begin, are the changes to the VAT and the pension systems, full independence for the Greek statistical authority ELSTAT and full implementation of the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the framework of EMU. With the exception of the pension reforms, which have been postponed until later with the agreement of the institutions, the measures were all passed by Parliament on July 15, Gerovasili pointed out. Eurozone leaders also called for the adoption of the Code for Civil Procedure and transposition of the Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive (BRRD) into national law, which will be voted in Parliament on Wednesday, she added. "The government wishes to make it clear that none of the above prior actions concerns the change in the taxation regime for farmers. Rumours that this will these measures will supposedly be passed in early August have absolutely no basis," she said.
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