European Commission Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis
The negotiations for the new borrowers’ protection framework voted into law on Friday were long and hard, with the Greek side thinking it had secured an agreement three times before being proven wrong.
Athens took several weeks to realize it was not dealing with “friendly” European Commissioner for Economic Affairs Pierre Moscovici or “tolerant” Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker, but one of the toughest officials in the Commission, Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis.
Along with the European Central Bank (which may not make much noise but hardly ever backs down on its demands in negotiations), the Latvian official has pressed the creditors’ chief negotiator, Declan Costello, to maintain an unrelenting position until the government decides to make the required changes to the new law on the protection of defaulters’ primary residences, even after the submission of the amendment.
It is also worth noting that for the creditors to give their blessing for the new law, the government has already started negotiations on the secondary legislation, that being the ministerial decisions to specify the application of the new framework.