Monday February 2, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
16o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Government tries to lower hopes ahead of Paris talks

Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis speaks to the press after a meeting with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and other government officials at the Maximos Mansion in Athens on Monday.

With the launch of talks with the troika in Paris due to begin on Tuesday afternoon, government officials on Monday sought to curb high hopes that have been cultivated in recent weeks, chiefly for potential tax cuts and other incentives for austerity-weary Greeks.

Following a meeting with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos, Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis told reporters that expectations had risen too high and that Greece would not be setting down any non-negotiable terms or “red lines” in the talks in Paris which would focus on “technical” matters. Greece’s “interlocutors” in Paris will be “executives of the troika and as such can only talk about the memorandum,” Hardouvelis said, referring to Greece’s loan deal with its creditors. “They can’t talk politics.”

The minister refuted reports that Athens would ask the creditors to lower certain taxes, such as a consumption tax on heating fuel which has proved inefficient as well as environmentally harmful. “That’s not on the agenda,” he said. “If they raise the issue, we’ll have answers.”

Sources indicated that the government decided to scale down hopes for tax relief to avert a huge disappointment if they fail to transpire and to ensure that the message being sent out by the Greek side is not totally discordant with that of troika representatives, who are keen to see that Athens is enforcing economic reforms.

Until late on Monday, members of the Paris delegation were hammering out the final details of their negotiating strategy. Meanwhile Finance Ministry officials were putting the finishing touches to a new unified property tax (ENFIA) which is to be submitted in Parliament by Friday. The ENFIA tax and Greece’s proposals for less onerous payment plans for those with nonperforming loans are among the issues expected to be discussed in Paris along with the budget and general progress with reforms.

Objections to ENFIA continued in the coalition ranks on Monday, with conservative lawmaker Dora Bakoyannis claiming that the tax was being introduced at the wrong time and has “exasperated the whole of Greek society.”

ekathimerini.com , Monday September 1, 2014 (20:26)  
Deputy PM Dragasakis confident ECB will not cut liquidity for Greek banks
Varoufakis counting on ECB as Sapin says Greece needs new contract with eurozone
Obama says Greece needs growth, not more austerity
A week in and Greece´s new leftist PM sticks to tough line, for now
Piraeus port U-turn will not hurt China investment: analysts
The shipping containers emblazoned with the COSCO logo on the quayside at Greece's biggest port Piraeus are a sign that China has invested heavily here. Even though Greece's new left-wing go...
ANALYSIS
Cash may dry up earlier than thought
The negotiations between the new government and the country’s international lenders got off to a rough start, as evidenced by the joint press conference between Finance Minister Yanis Varouf...
Inside Business
SOCCER
Reds stretch lead as Panetolikos upsets PAOK
Panetolikos’s surprise win at Toumba over PAOK on Saturday allowed Olympiakos to open its lead at the top of the Super League table to five points, one week before the Reds’ visit to Thessal...
TRACK & FIELD
Three Greek athletes earn tickets to Prague
Greek track and field enjoyed an exceptionally good weekend of performances by local athletes at various indoor meetings, with three of them earning a ticket to the European Indoor Champions...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
The dogma and the command center
We have reached a critical juncture. We have a new, inexperienced government trying to see if “the great negotiations” discussed by everyone, be they from the left or the right, on TV over t...
EDITORIAL
Silence will not be forgiven
It’s time for a turn toward realism, caution and logic. The negotiations with our partners and lenders must be concluded swiftly before the remaining healthy parts of the country’s productiv...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Deputy PM Dragasakis confident ECB will not cut liquidity for Greek banks
2. Reds stretch lead as Panetolikos upsets PAOK
3. Three Greek athletes earn tickets to Prague
4. Varoufakis counting on ECB as Sapin says Greece needs new contract with eurozone
5. Piraeus port U-turn will not hurt China investment: analysts
6. Cash may dry up earlier than thought
more news
Today
This Week
1. Dijsselbloem says Greece has to decide how to move ahead
2. Greece shakes Europe's political kaleidoscope: expect the unexpected
3. France open to easing Greek debt burden, says finance minister
4. The dogma and the command center
5. Greece offers olive branch to seek allies
6. Poll shows most Germans want Greece to stay in eurozone
Today
This Week
1. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
2. SYRIZA heads for historic victory but without majority
3. EU must accept that Greek debt relief is inevitable
4. SYRIZA's win will test institutions
5. Greek Elections 2015: The day after | LIVE
6. Athens may veto further EU sanctions against Russia
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.