Monday May 25, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Troika talks continue ahead of party leaders' meeting

Prime Minister Lucas Papademos is due to meet the leaders of Greeces three coalition parties on Tuesday evening to finalize the measures that the government will commit to in order to receive further funding from its eurozone partners and the International Monetary Fund.

PASOKs George Papandreou, New Democracys Antonis Samaras and the head of the Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) Giorgos Karatzaferis are due to hold talks with Papademos some time after 9 p.m.

Papademos held lengthy talks with representatives of the European Commission, European Central Bank and IMF on Monday night. The negotiations, which centered on the budget cuts that Greece has to make to satisfy its lenders, ended at about 4 a.m.

On Tuesday, the troika representatives met with Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos and Labor Minister Giorgos Koutroumanis. It appears that one of the elements to the agreement will be a reduction of 20 percent to the minimum wage of 751 euros per month (gross).

"Unfortunately the negotiations are so tough that as soon as one chapter closes, another opens, Venizelos said late on Monday.

Greece has to reduce public spending by 1.5 percent of gross domestic product, or 3.3 billion euros. The largest chunk, about 1.1 billion, will be from cuts in spending on health and medicines. The public investment program will be limited by 300 million euros and defense spending will be cut by the same amount.

Some 15,000 places in the civil service will also be scrapped this year as the government attempts to reduce over the next three years by 150,000 the number of people employed in the public sector.

All the cuts will have to be approved and agreed on by the three party leaders on Tuesday evening.

Another issue the leaders will have to finalize following their initial talks on Sunday night is the reduction in the minimum wage. The three leaders seemed to accept this in return for the idea of scrapping the 13th and 14th monthly salaries being dropped.

However, cuts to the minimum wage will have a knock-on effect because they will lead to a 1.3-billion drop in tax revenues and a 2.4-billion reduction in social security contributions. This means the government will have to make up for these losses. Furthermore, Papandreou, Samaras and Karatzaferis are also being asked to agree to scrap the law that allows terms of collective contracts to apply even after they have expired, meaning employers will have the ability to negotiate new deals based on lower wage structure.

With Greece's future in the eurozone in question, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has ratcheted up the pressure on Greek politicians to conclude a deal with the troika.

The full package must be agreed with Greece and approved by the eurozone, ECB and IMF before February 15.

This is to allow time for complex legal procedures involved in a bond swap deal - under which the value of private investors' holdings of Greek debt will be cut radically in value - so Athens can get rescue funds before March 20 when it has to meet 14.5 billion euros of maturing bonds.

Jean-Claude Juncker, who chairs the group of eurozone finance ministers, backed a plan put forward by Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy to set up a special escrow account into which Greece would make future interest payments as a means of guaranteeing that creditors were consistently paid.

However, Juncker denied that the euro was in danger because of the debt crisis. The euro will outlive us all, he told German Inforadio on Tuesday.

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday February 7, 2012 (19:06)  
Varoufakis slams media over Riga Eurogroup reporting
Greeks back governments red lines, but want to keep euro
SYRIZA seeks new relationship with police
Solving islands water problems would take 66.4 mln euros, study finds
ANALYSIS
VAT adjustment is the way forward
The Greek governments hope for a political solution and a staff-level agreement on the program review by the end of May is looking increasingly unlikely. To the extent that a piecemeal appr...
Tender for Thriasio freight center to restart next month
The tender process for the Thriasio freight center is about to restart, with candidate investors set to receive the terms so that there may be tangible progress by end-June. If everything go...
Inside Business
SOCCER
Berg brace gives Panathinaikos four-point lead
Panathinaikos beat Atromitos on Sunday and took advantage of the goalless draw between PAOK and Asteras Tripolis to open a four-point gap from PAOK at the top of the Super League play-off mi...
SOCCER
Reds add Cup to league trophy with 3-1 win over Xanthi
Olympiakos completed a league-and-cup double on Saturday by beating Xanthi 3-1 in the Greek Cup final at the Olympic Stadium of Athens, that was more balanced than the final score suggests. ...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
The good news and the bad
The good news is that a Greek default will most likely be prevented, a deal will be reached with the countrys creditors and an extension will be granted for negotiations over the next bailo...
EDITORIAL
Geopolitical threats
Greece needs to extricate itself from this crisis fast and get back on its feet, not least because the geopolitical climate is becoming increasingly stormy. The Balkan region is re-entering ...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Berg brace gives Panathinaikos four-point lead
2. VAT adjustment is the way forward
3. Tender for Thriasio freight center to restart next month
4. Varoufakis slams media over Riga Eurogroup reporting
5. Banks fear NPL sum will reach 100 bln euros
6. Socar has found a way to opt out of the DESFA deal
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greeks back government's red lines, but want to keep euro
2. Greece does not have the money to make June IMF repayment, warns interior minister
3. The good news and the bad
4. SYRIZA seeks new relationship with police
5. Solving islands' water problems would take 66.4 mln euros, study finds
6. Geopolitical threats
Today
This Week
1. The Greek-German breakthrough that didnt come
2. Conspiracy madness
3. Greece came close to not paying IMF
4. National self-awareness put to the test
5. Albanian demarche raises concerns about possible territorial claims over Greece
6. Greek endgame nears for Tsipras as bank collateral hits buffers
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.