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Greece and the economic crisis 2016

NEWS ARCHIVE - Oct 10 - Oct 19

October 19, 2016

Archbishop of Greece to Government: ‘We Will Not Deliver Our Homeland and Faith to You’ - Greek Reporter

"During his speech, Ieronymos challenged the government to not mess with Greece’s religion. “You may have sold out Greece’s treasures, our trains, our ports, but we will not hand over to you our homeland and our Orthodox faith,” he said.

Speaking about the economic crisis, the Archbishop said that, “these are hard times and all people are suffering. We need to be clear on what we want, what kind of family we want, how we want our children to be, how we want to live tomorrow, what kind of vision we have,” and added, “It is time we all need to wonder: Should we start supporting individuals instead of political parties?”

Greek government pins debt relief hopes on Obama visit - eKathimerini

"The SYRIZA-led coalition, which sees Obama’s visit as a confirmation of Greece’s role as a bastion of stability in a volatile region, is banking on his support in its bid to convince creditors of the need to restructure the country’s debt.

Statements emanating from Washington, with regard to this and the need for growth policies to replace austerity, have galvanized the leftist government, which has been turning its gaze stateside for support.

And regardless of what happens until the US president’s arrival in Greece, his visit – which has yet to be officially confirmed – is seen as an important signal of support that will send a powerful message about the prospects of the Greek economy to international investors."

Greek central gov't cash balance in deficit of 1.144 bln euros in Jan-Sept - Athens News Agency

"Greece's central government cash balance recorded a deficit of 1,144 million euros in the January-September period this year, compared to a deficit of 2,499 million in the same period in 2015, the Bank of Greece said on Wednesday. "

Opposition calls for postponement of boradcasting council decision - eKathimerini

"Greek opposition parties – with the exception of the KKE communist party and far-right Golden Dawn – on Wednesday requested from a meeting between Parliamentary Speaker Nikos Voutsis and the House's deputy speakers to postpone a decision on the composition of the new National Broadcasting Council (ESR)."

October 18, 2016

Greece cannot tap markets without debt cut: central banker - Yahoo

Greece will not be able to return to credit markets as planned without debt relief, the struggling country's central banker said Monday.

"If the Greek debt is not judged to be viable, the expected market exit in 2018 is not possible," Bank of Greece governor Yannis Stournaras told a business lobby.

"The talks must begin now and be concluded as soon as possible."

Greece gets two expressions of interest for maintenance ROSCO sale - Reuters

"Greece has received two expressions of interest for the purchase of ROSCO, its rail maintenance company, the country's privatisation agency said on Monday.

It said it had received expressions from Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane SpA and Skoda Transportation.

Advisors to the privatisations agency, HRADF, would recommend which candidates qualified for the next phase of the process which involved access to detailed information on the asset and transaction terms."

Pavlopoulos to Erdogan: Treaty of Lausanne ‘Finally and Irrevocably’ Determined Both Greece’s and EU’s Borders With Turkey - Greek Reporter

“Greece has always supported the constitutional legitimacy in Turkey; we wish to have good neighborly relations. Greece is Turkey’s gateway to Europe,” he underlined and added: “That means that we respect both history and international law. And it is known that the Treaty of Lausanne finally and irrevocably has not only determined Greece’s borders with Turkey but also Europe’s borders with Turkey because Greece’s borders are also EU borders, since according to European law, the EU borders are also the borders of the member states.”

October 17, 2016

Greece's lenders to launch new review as Athens digs in on debt relief - Reuters

"Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras was re-elected a year ago promising to fight to revive collective bargaining and resist reforms that may lower the minimum wage. But he also needs a swift conclusion of the review to achieve Athens's primary goal of restructuring a mountain of debt, the highest in the euro zone, and mollifying an increasingly jaded public worn by years of austerity and unemployment.

Some opinion polls show Tsipras trailing opposition conservatives by up to 10 points, so the pressure is on for him to deliver."

EU and IMF auditors to visit Athens as Greece's agony continues - UK Guardian

"Fourteen months after being bailed out to the tune of €86bn (£77bn) – Greece’s third financial rescue since 2010 – representatives of the EU and the International Monetary Fund fly in on Monday to review progress on economic reforms promised by the government in exchange for rescue funds.

The creditors’ visit is taking place against a backdrop of ongoing economic difficulty for the nation. Seven years into its worst slump in post-war history, the eurozone’s weakest link is saddled with anaemic growth, stubbornly high unemployment, poor export growth, consumer pessimism and debt of more than €330bn."

October 15, 2016

Mitsotakis: ‘Populism is effective in opposition and ineffective in government’ - Capital GR

"Mitsotakis said tackling populism constitutes a crucial issue for Greece whether it comes from the Left of the Right. “SYRIZA was elected supported by a big lie. Inevitably, the country collided with reality. We had to sign a third memorandum. The economy remains in recession. Six years after the outbreak of the crisis, Greece remains in aid programs. 90% of the population believes the country is heading in the wrong direction,” he said.

Concerning his party’s recipe for an exit from the crisis, the ND leader said Greece needs a new policy mix that will include cutting taxation and government spending to bring growth."

October 13, 2016

Greece and Europe: A Troubled Economic Partnership - Huffington Post

It is rumored that Constantine Karamanlis, the Greek statesman who was the architect of Greece’s participation in the European Union, once remarked, “I am throwing the Greeks into the sea, and they will have to learn to swim.”

Thirty-five years down the road, it is still uncertain whether the Greeks, able sea navigators throughout their history, can prove to be good swimmers in the European seas.

The crisis of 2010 in addition to earlier mini crises and near misses of the late 1980s and early 1990s are indicative of the roughness of the seas that the Greeks have had to navigate and their well-documented resolve to do things “their way.”

Greece warns of 'devastating results' without debt relief- Fox News

"In a letter Thursday to EU Finance Commissioner Pierre Moscovici, 36 lawmakers from Greece's ruling Syriza party and European allies parties urged the EU to press eurozone bailout lenders to start negotiating new terms on the whopping 315 billion euro ($347.5 billion) Greek national debt. That would entail longer maturities and a smoother repayment schedule."

October 12, 2016

Unless we fix it, our debt will be a problem, says Greece - Reuters

Remarkably disingenuous (or ironic) headline from Reuters.

"Greece called for a swift resolution of its debt crisis on Wednesday, saying its debt mountain would remain unsustainable even in a post-recession era with healthy rates of growth.

The crisis-hit country has been lobbying hard to get its debt, which at 176 percent of GDP is the highest in the euro zone, back to manageable levels. International lenders agree to the idea, but have yet to agree how it will work."

Greece: Bomb at Bookstore Causes Damage, No Injuries - New York Times

"Police in Greece say a central Athens bookstore selling survivalist literature has been targeted in a bomb attack, causing damage but no injuries.

The blast occurred late Wednesday following warning telephone calls to a newspaper and news website, with the device exploding a few minutes earlier than the time given by the anonymous caller."

October 11, 2016

Council of State to convene over TV permits Wednesday, Friday - eKathimerini

"Greece’s Council of State, the country’s highest administrative court, was expected to convene on Wednesday and Friday to decide on the constitutionality of a recent competition carried out by the coalition government for four national television channel permits.

...The court has already rejected appeals by several TV channels against the recent auction."

Eurogroup to decide on potential disbursement of EUR2.8bn loan tranche - Capital GR

"The EWG that will meet in Luxembourg at 3 pm (Athens time) is expected to be the first one to give the green light for the disbursement of the 2.8-billion-euro loan sub-tranche provided that the prior actions have been successfully met while the decision for the disbursement will be taken later in the day by the ESM."

Greek Finance ministry has strengthened legal weaponry against tax evasion, Alexiadis says - Athens News Agency

"Greek Finance ministry has strengthened its legal weaponry against tax evasion with a new legal framework offering the possibility of automated exchange of information between services for all taxpayers included in foreign lists, Finance Alternate Minister Tryfon Alexiadis said on Tuesday."

Greece rejects asylum requests from more Turkish soldiers - eKathierini

"Greece has rejected asylum requests from seven of eight Turkish soldiers who fled there after an abortive coup attempt against President Tayyip Erdogan in July, their lawyer said on Tuesday.

...Four members of the group were informed on Tuesday their asylum claims had been rejected by a first-instance board, joining another three previously rejected. One of them has lodged an appeal while the asylum board has not issued a decision on the eighth applicant."

Greece opens center for unaccompanied minors - Fox News

"Mouzalas said some 2,200 unaccompanied minors are currently in Greece, of whom 1,000 live in specialized accommodation. Some 60,000 refugees and other migrants have been trapped in the country following a series of border closures.

Human rights groups have repeatedly criticized living conditions for unaccompanied minors. Mouzalas said 25 are currently in police custody, for their own protection, and will be resettled by next week."

October 10, 2016

Why Greece Is Eyeing the IMF to Help Ease Its Debt Pile - Bloomberg

"I've often said that Greece in this situation, it has nothing to do with her politics, it's to do with two elephants fighting it out, and Greece is a little gazelle trying to avoid to being stamped on."

"...Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos said that Germany’s opposition to debt relief is at odds with its demands that the International Monetary Fund join the bailout program. Speaking in an interview on Friday with Bloomberg's Francine Lacqua, Tsakalotos said he conveyed this message to his German counterpart Wolfgang Schaeuble earlier in the day. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde has expressed skepticism that Greece can recover without a reduction in its debt load, though Schaeuble said as recently as Thursday that the Mediterranean country should meet its commitments, adding that it doesn’t have to pay interest for more than a decade."



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