BUSINESS

Dijsselbloem expresses concern over Greece’s post-program prospects

YANNIS PALAIOLOGOS

TAGS: Finance

Former Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem expressed concern over Greece’s post-program prospects in an interview with Kathimerini on the occasion of his visit to Athens for the presentation of his book “The Euro Crisis.”

Responding to criticism that during the rush to get rid of the Greek problem the European institutions have turned a blind eye to the resurgence of a clientelistic state and the country’s very low growth rates, Dijsselbloem was clear: “The Greek programs were not a success. Some things did improve, particularly on the fiscal front, and the gross domestic product is growing again; but the programs lasted for eight years, cost huge funds, and inflicted very large economic and social costs as well as a huge loss of political capital.”

The Dutch politician is far from optimistic about the country’s future after the bailout program: “Does Greece continue to improve its public services, to reduce bureaucracy, to combat vested interests, to shrink the state’s presence in certain fields? There are no such plans, leading international investors to consider investments in Greece a very complex proposition. And the country’s politicians do not seem to have the resolve and the discipline to head in that direction.”

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