Media sources have suggested that the Greek government seems ready to raise the issue of easing the terms of the austerity programme to the troika representatives. The current round of negotiations with the lenders for the tranche of EUR 2.8 billion is in progress and various meetings are held in ministries.
Government sources told journalists that in his meeting with troika tomorrow [Mar 7], Prime Minister Antonis Samaras will move under the logic that “we continue to negotiate on whatever is not working.” PM’s office stresses the prime minister will tell the lenders’ representatives that there can be no further austerity measures, insisting on strengthening the country’s development prospects by targeting investment and employment growth.
Government sources told protothema.gr that the coming months will be crucial for the future of the austerity programme as the country is at a crossroads and troika must stop pushing things further, since the Greek society will not be able to bear the pressure.
The main remain that of the VAT reduction in catering and the excise tax on fuel that has sent its price soaring and consumption on a downward path.
Regarding the issue of redundancies in the public sector, Samaras will insist on promoting the government’s programme of availability, considering that beyond any social unrest that can be caused by a wave of layoffs, there will be a question of social stability, if one takes into account the reactions of the other two governmental partners.
The economic team will also present arrangements to relieve the indebted households and a programme to transfer funds in order to support and relief the unemployed.
Troika people meet today with Yannis Stournaras, and tomorrow, they will be received by PM Samaras. The meetings are expected to be completed by Sunday [Mar 10], when troika will leave to prepare its evaluation report.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is set to decide in the coming days on whether to reshuffle the Cabinet after PASOK leader and coalition partner Evangelos Venizelos, declared that he was ready to put active Socialist politicians in the government, Kathimerini writes.
However, Greek government spokesman Simos Kedikoglou said there was no truth to reports that Prime Minister Antonis Samaras was planning to change the ministers in his government.
“There is no issue at all of a reshuffle, period,” Kedikoglou said in an e-mailed statement, Bloomberg reported.