Greek PM vows to bring down unemployment

Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has vowed to bring down unemployment while voicing optimism that some 770,000 new jobs will be created by 2020.

“Unemployment is society's most insidious and tough enemy because it undermines the dreams of youth,” Samaras said during a meeting of the government's employment council on Monday.

“For the first time in 24 quarters there is a projected GDP increase while there is a forecast for new 770,000 jobs by 2020,” the conservative premier said.

Samaras asked the members of the committee to fine tune their proposals ahead of their next meeting in October.

Greece's jobless rate dropped slightly to 27.2 percent in May from 27.3 percent in the previous month, according to Greece's statistics agency ELSTAT. However, the country's unemployment rate still remained at more than double the eurozone average of 11.6 percent in May.

Meanwhile, data from ELSTA for the April-June period that were published Monday showed that GDP contracted by an annual rate of 0.3 percent, slightly worse than a previous estimate of a 0.2 percent contraction.