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Posted on: April 8th, 2013 by AlYunaniya Staff No Comments

Greece: troika meeting ends with mutual concessions

samaras troika

photo: ND flickr

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Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’ meeting withthe heads of the troika at the Maximos mansion yesterday ended with mutual concessions, media have reported.

According to protothema.gr, the Premier set thered lines clarifying that the government will not implement new measures, as the Greek economy and society cannot bear them.

Leaving the Maximos mansion, Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras said to reporters that a substantial progress in the negotiations was achieved but he also underlined that many issues remain still open.

“I believe that we will reach an agreement in the next few days,” the FinMin said. “I can’t say how soon this will be because negotiations are ongoing.”

However, on Friday evening, The Guardian writes, Athens’ normally mild-mannered finance minister, Yannis Stournaras, reportedly lashed out at mission chiefs from the EU, ECB and IMF during a heated exchange in his office, telling them they could “take the keys” to the economy ministry if they continued to demand more austerity from a nation experiencing a sixth straight year of recession.

Emerging from the building, the economics professor uncharacteristically labeled the talks as “very difficult” and gave a taste of his own frustration. “The negotiations for the next loan tranches are still very difficult. I can assure you that things are not simple at all,” he said.

After troika representatives abruptly cancelled a meeting with Stournaras late on Saturday, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras tried to smooth over the cracks.

One of the main topics of the government-troika meetings was the transfer plan in the public sector. The government agrees to proceed with the dismissal of perjury public employees by June and those removed to be replaced with an equal number to be recruited through ASEP. While there is political agreement on this issue, the problem is the time schedule does not pan out due to the slow pace of the public sector, protothema.gr reports.

The second major issue has been the National Bank-Eurobank merger and their recapitalization, with the Greek government insisting that it should continue uninterrupted and unchanged despite the delay in collection of amounts required from the private shareholders.

The two sides also discussed the adjustment doses for amounts owed to pension funds and tax offices and how to bridge the financial gap of EUR 2.7 billion for 2013-14. New measures to cover the gap are currently being rejected since they would not pass from a parliamentary voting.

 

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