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Greece and the economic crisis 2016

NEWS ARCHIVE - Sept 7 - Sept 13

September 13, 2016

EU finance ministers to consider withholding Greece aid - Magseries

"The 27 European Union leaders - the entire bloc, except Britain - will gather on September 16 to discuss the fallout from the British vote in June to quit the EU. A showdown is expected in Bratislava, with the Visegrad four already holding their own meeting in June to present a united front."

Hundreds of firefighters battle wildfires in Greece - Global News

"Nearly 300 firefighters, alongside volunteers and soldiers, battled wildfires across the northern Greek Island of Thassos on Monday."

Greece wants Russia to invest in its coal industry - RT News

"Athens has offered Russia’s Gazprom the opportunity to invest up to $900 million in the country’s coal industry, business daily Kommersant reports, citing its sources.

... The project proposed by Greece could settle a thirty-year dispute over compensation related to Athens’ incomplete execution of an intergovernmental agreement signed in 1987 with the Soviet Union on gas deliveries."

Why Greece’s Problems Matter for Gold - MondayMorn

"...Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras charged into power two years ago. He promised an €11.5 billion economic stimulus package. The stimulus bundle included tax breaks, along with increases in pensions, the minimum wage and the tax-free threshold.

But Tsipras delivered nothing he promised. And so another debt standoff seems inevitable.

The debt load, standing at 176% of GDP, is simply unsustainable."

September 12, 2016

Bailout inspectors back in Greece as reforms delayed - Fox

"Representatives from the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank and European Commission were due for talks starting Monday with government officials. The delayed reforms include measures to accelerate a privatization program, energy sector liberalization and bank governance."

Greece blames creditors over economy’s inability to recover - RT

"We are closer than ever before to a solution of this crisis. What is delaying the effort of regaining the trust of the markets is the constant disagreement between the European institutions and the IMF," Tsipras said during a news conference at the Thessaloniki International Fair.

Greece's lenders have "failed miserably" in their policies aimed at rescuing the Greek economy, Syriza party economist Marica Frangakis told CNBC.

Tsipras’ and Frangakis' comments follow the eurozone finance ministers’ meeting on Friday. The Eurogroup want Greece to act faster on its economic reforms in order to get rescue loans from the EU."

September 11, 2016

Forgotten inside Greece’s notorious camp for child refugees - UK Guardian

"...In Athens – on the frontline of Europe’s worst refugee crisis since the second world war – it is a holding pen for innocents whose conditions, in the words of a scathing report issued by Human Rights Watch on Friday, is not only deplorable but should never exist. Greek authorities call it a “special place for the accommodation of foreigners”, part of a chain of closed facilities available to some of the 3,464 migrant children registered nationwide. As a measure of last resort, minors, they say, are placed in such institutions for lack of viable alternatives and for their own protection.

Under the watchful gaze of the guards, their eyes darting this way and that, the detainees – all boys from countries that, on our visit, include Algeria, Syria, Tunisia, Pakistan and Iraq – prefer to watch their words. This is not where any of them intended to be."

Greece says EU-IMF rift stalling Greek debt solution - Channel News Asia

"We are closer than ever before to a solution to this crisis. What is delaying the effort of regaining the trust of the markets is the constant disagreement between the European institutions and the IMF," Tsipras said during a press conference at the Thessaloniki International Fair.

The Washington-based IMF, which was key to Greece's three bailouts, has said it won't give a penny to the latest one until it sees a concrete plan from the Europeans to cut substantially Greece's massive debt burden."

Greece presses creditors for better debt repayment terms - Fox News

"Alexis Tsipras told reporters Sunday that Greece "has the right for a fair debt adjustment" after years of punishing spending and income cuts. He said the country "cannot wait much longer."

Greece's creditors have said they are prepared to discuss better repayment terms for the country's debt, which exceeds 175 percent of annual economic output."

Tsipras Seeks to Revive his Political Fortunes on Economic Promises - WSJ

...Europe’s most electorally successful populist has become nearly as unpopular as the Greek political establishment he ousted almost two years ago. A recent survey showed only 19% of Greeks view him favorably and 85% are dissatisfied with his government.

Such low approval ratings—familiar to Europe’s least-popular establishment politicians, such as French President François Hollande—reflect how the star of the eurozone’s antiausterity movement has come down to earth.

Because of its deep economic crisis, Greece was ahead of the rest of Europe in the revolt against mainstream centrist parties. Elsewhere, antiestablishment populists of the anticapitalist left and the nationalist right are now on the rise. In Greece, they have been partners in government since early 2015, in a coalition led by Mr. Tsipras’s left-wing Syriza party, and their appeal is on the wane."

September 9, 2016

Greece rejects return of EU rule on reverse migration flow - Fox News

"The Greek government is adamantly opposing the revival of a European Union rule that would allow the forcible return to its territory of asylum-seekers who entered the bloc via Greece — a path followed by more than a million people in the past two years.

...Kyritsis, the government official, said Greece considers the Dublin rule to be "practically dead" because it does not address current migratory pressures and should be drastically overhauled. He added that calls for its reintroduction are to a degree linked with domestic political concerns in Germany...

Kyritsis said the migrant relocation deal ought to have seen 33,000 people transferred to other EU countries from Greece so far. Instead, only 3,000 have made the journey."

EU finance ministers to consider withholding Greece aid - Miami Herald

"While Greece has made some progress in reshaping its economy, the bailout loans are saddling it with a huge amount of debt that many experts say it has no real prospect of repaying. The national debt is set to peak this year at a whopping 182.8 percent of gross domestic product, according to European Commission estimates.

... With the EU economy struggling with anemic growth, the European Central Bank urged governments in the 19-country euro currency union Thursday to do more to improve economic fundamentals."

Eurozone ministers: Greece must act faster on reforms - UK Guardian

"Tsipras wants a joint stance on the need to ease fiscal rules with Europe’s other six Mediterranean countries – Spain’s acting PM, Mario Rajoy, was invited but is too busy trying to form a government at home – ahead of the EU summit on 16 September (without Britain) in Bratislava.

Tsipras has long argued that the fiscal straitjacket favoured by Germany will never allow weak economies such as Greece’s to recover, and said in an interview with Le Monde on Thursday that the EU stability pact – whose budget deficit limits have already been tested by France, Italy, Spain and Portugal, “is not the word of God”.

September 8, 2016

Greece's Tsipras says debt relief needed for growth - Reuters

"Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras warned euro zone leaders on Thursday his country would struggle to return to sustainable growth without a debt-relief deal.

Athens, facing a second bailout review entailing an unpopular loosening of labor laws in the autumn, is keen to show that painful tax rises and pension cuts as part of its 86 billion-euro bailout deal last year will bear fruit.

In an interview with French newspaper Le Monde, Tsipras said he expected the recession-stricken Greek economy to return to growth in 2016 and expand by 2.7 percent next year but that the lack of debt relief acted as a brake on the recovery."

Greece flash floods leave at least three dead - BBC

"The worst casualties were in and around the south-western city of Kalamata, where a disabled woman aged 63 and a man of 80 died in their basement homes. A 90 year-old was also found dead."

September 7, 2016

Greece fined €10m for breaking EU waste rules - BBC

The cash-strapped Greek government has been ordered by the European Court to pay €10m (£8.4m; $11m) and another €30,000 per day for not following rules on disposing of rubbish.

As much as 80% of waste ends up at Greek landfill sites, according to a 2010 report.

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) said the government had not complied with several deadlines to improve."

Syriza Strains Greece’s Credibility - WSJ

"...when one of Mr. Georgiou’s underlings accused him in 2011 of artificially inflating the deficit to help creditors impose draconian austerity measures on Greece, a certain Greek worldview was aroused. It was a charge tailor-made for those who believed the bailouts had been the cause of Greece’s economic troubles, and not the other way around. Prosecutors who had been remarkably lax about investigating statistical skullduggery prior to 2010 jumped at the case, never mind that Mr. Georgiou was appointed a full three months after Greece’s bailout had been signed.

...If Greece’s government seems keen to bury the country’s precrisis sins in a story of statistical malfeasance, it is determined to elevate the regulation of the national broadcasting sector into a purge of the “triangle of corruption” linking politicians, media barons and bankers."

Serious flooding in Evrotas River valley and Messinia as heavy rains sweep Greece - AMNA

"A state of emergency was declared in areas of Thessaloniki and the Peloponnese on Wednesday, in the wake of extensive flooding caused by torrential rains in the last two days.

A meeting attended by a government delegation in Kalamata, in Messinia, decided to implement the same set of relief measures used in the wake of disasters at Megalopolis two months earlier and on the island of Skopelos."

NEWS ARCHIVE - Sept 2016


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