Friday October 31, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
18o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
On visit to Athens, Merkel pledges action on Greek debt sustainability

Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras (l) welcomes German Chancellor Angela Merkel (r) for a meeting at the Maximos Mansion in Athens, on Friday.

On her second visit to Athens in less than two years on Friday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel pledged that the eurozone would discuss Greece’s debt sustainability later this year.

There was pleasant surprise among Greek government officials that Merkel made a public reference to the issue of talks on further debt relief as Athens thought that the chancellor would refrain from commenting on the topic.

“We will see what steps we have to take regarding the long-term sustainability of Greek debt,” Merkel said, while noting that this discussion would happen as the adjustment program comes to its conclusion at the end of this year.

She also referred to Greece’s return to international markets on Thursday, when it issued a 3-billion-euro five-year bond, as a “step in the right direction.”

The German chancellor further expressed satisfaction with Greece meeting its fiscal targets. “Greece has honored its pledges,” she said. “I hope that policy is continued.”

She insisted that the combination of austerity policies with structural reforms was the right approach to tackle the Greek crisis and that the country would soon begin to see its benefits. “I believe that after all these necessary reforms have been carried out – with more remaining – Greece will have more opportunities than difficulties,” said the German leader.

On his part, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras insisted that Greece would not need a third bailout program and that it would keep up efforts to restore its economy.

“My pace and that of my government will not change,” he said. “What has changed is the image, the psychology... markets have voted for Greece and given it their confidence.”

Sources said that during a meeting between the two leaders and Deputy Prime Minister Evangelos Venizelos the issue of the loan the Bank of Greece was forced to provide the Nazi regime with during the Second World War was discussed. It is the first time that this issue has been raised at such a high level. It was decided that Venizelos, who is also foreign minister, should take the matter up with his German counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

It was also decided on Friday that plans to create an investment fund in Greece with German participation would go ahead. The official announcements are expected on May 5 but sources said the two leaders agreed yesterday that the Institution for Growth in Greece (IfG) would initially finance small and medium-sized enterprises. Germany is to invest an initial amount of 100 million euros via its government-owned development bank KfW, which will also have a seat on the IfG’s board. The European Investment Bank and the French government are due to participate in the project too. France is also due to contribute 100 million euros but this has yet to be rubber-stamped due to a cabinet reshuffle in Paris.

Merkel’s visit prompted strong criticism from Greece’s leftist SYRIZA opposition, which accused the chancellor of trying to influence the result of May’s local and European elections. In an interview with daily newspaper Efimerida ton Syntakton, SYRIZA chief Alexis Tsipras said that Merkel’s visit was designed to give Samaras an election boost.

Tsipras, who did not meet with the Merkel during this or her last visit in October 2012, repeated his proposal for an international conference on Greek debt, along the lines of the 1953 London debt conference on Germany.

ekathimerini.com , Friday April 11, 2014 (19:57)  
A year after GD members shot dead, police have no leads
No new Manolada trial, court rules
Greece poised to send reform proposals to troika
Extended summer timetable at museums, sites hailed a success
Power rates soared 60 pct in six years
During the 2008-13 Greek recession, the country endured the steepest domestic electricity rate hikes seen anywhere in the European Union, amounting to a total of 60 percent over the six year...
NBG chairman sees risks to recovery
The chairman of National Bank of Greece warned on Thursday that political, economic and geopolitical risks pose a threat to the country’s recovery. “Unfortunately we made too much noise and ...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Obradovic watches Greens thrash his Fenerbahce
The second homecoming of former Panathinaikos coach Zeljko Obradovic, now at Fenerbahce, was not as emotional as last year’s, but it was certainly was the night of an emphatic triumph for th...
SOCCER
Berg returns to add spice to Panathinaikos´s Cup win
The second round of games for the group stage of the Greek Cup produced plenty of interesting games and results in midweek, but it still lags the upset potential that the knock-out stages of...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
The judiciary’s responsibility
The reform efforts over the past few years have begun to bear fruit. Greece has improved its standing in the World Bank’s Doing Business rankings, rising 48 positions from 2010 to 61st place...
COMMENTARY
Time is running out in Afghanistan
Thirteen years after the attacks on the Twin Towers and NATO's entry into the war in Afghanistan, things remain pretty much unchanged: Political instability and insecurity  reign in the Cent...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Obradovic watches Greens thrash his Fenerbahce
2. Berg returns to add spice to Panathinaikos´s Cup win
3. Power rates soared 60 pct in six years
4. NBG chairman sees risks to recovery
5. Greek consumers shift toward money saving
6. IMF could offer know-how in backup plan for Greece
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greek euro dilemma is back as minister predicts volatility
2. Students hijack university senate meeting
3. Clientelism belongs to the past, says Mitsotakis
4. European stocks tumble as banks decline after Enria’s comments
5. Civil servants to be investigated for transferring money abroad
6. Over 1,500 buildings and vehicles damaged in flash floods
Today
This Week
1. Austria’s creative bookkeeping beats Greece on secret debts
2. End of reason, end of humanity
3. Clean bill of health for Greek banks from stress tests
4. Samaras pledges action after flash floods in Athens
5. Eurobank, National Bank restructurings eliminate capital gap
6. Athens flood damage assessed, compensation payments to begin
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.