Wednesday Jan 28, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
9o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
As troika returns, gov't seeks to win back voters ahead of May elections

With the troika due back in Athens on Sunday and local, as well as European Parliament, elections looming in May, the government is about to attempt to appease several disgruntled groups with a bill containing changes to the tax system.

Kathimerini understands that among other things the legislation will reduce the size of fines for individuals and firms having problems meeting their tax obligations and exempt homes that have been in the possession of owners for more than 25 years from capital gains tax for property.

Defense Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos also confirmed on Tuesday that members of the armed forces who receive a bonus for taking part in frontline duties will not see their benefits taxed. “The prime minister [Antonis Samaras] has given instructions to the relevant ministers for the legislation to be drawn up immediately,” said Avramopoulos.

There was also a meeting between Finance Ministry general secretary Haris Theoharis and New Democracy MPs to discuss the grievances of farmers, who are still protesting in some parts of Greece. Theoharis is thought to have agreed to make several changes that would ease the tax burden on those working in the agricultural sector. The conservative lawmakers are due to meet farmers today and it is likely they will demand a meeting with Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras as well.

All this comes just three months before Greeks vote in the local and European elections due to be held on May 18 and 25. The government is hoping to come away with a result that will not raise questions about its ability to see out its four-year term, as Samaras has insisted it will.

The troika could also play a significant role in the government’s prospects, particularly when it comes to debt relief. However, this issue will be firmly off the table when representatives of Greece’s lenders return to Athens on Sunday. Talks between the two sides are due to resume on Monday with the aim of concluding the review of the Greek program by the March 10 Eurogroup so eurozone finance ministers can agree to the disbursement of almost 9 billion euros more in bailout funds.

Talks are expected to focus on the competition-enhancing measures Greece has been asked to adopt as well as the potential fiscal gap for 2015, which Athens estimates to be smaller than 1 billion euros, whereas the troika puts it closer to 2 billion.

Other outstanding issues are the reduction of social security contributions for employers by 3.9 percentage points, which has to be replaced by other revenue-raising measures, the abolishing of several parafiscal charges and the removal of restrictions to mass dismissals.

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday February 18, 2014 (21:02)  
Police looking for two more suspects in Xeros case
Tsipras unveils anti-austerity cabinet
Greek coast guard search for missing ferry passenger
Serres police seek thieves of contraband smokes
Greek tourism rise outshines global gains
The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) announced on Tuesday in Madrid that worldwide tourism posted growth of 4.7 percent in arrivals in 2014, while Greece experienced a 22.2 ...
Dritsas announces cancellation of OLP sale
Before even undertaking his portfolio, the new government’s alternate minister for shipping, Theodoros Dritsas, announced the cancellation of the privatization of Piraeus Port Authority (OLP...
Inside Business
SOCCER
PAOK strikes deal with Portugal´s Ricardo Costa
PAOK announced on Tuesday its agreement with Portuguese international defender Ricardo Costa. The Thessaloniki club added that the player is expected on Wednesday to undergo a medical test a...
BASKETBALL
Basket League favorites survive challenges on the road
PAOK consolidated its position in the top three of the Basket League with a triumph at AGO Rethymnou on Saturday, while Olympiakos and Panathinaikos emerged victorious from their tough away ...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Greece, where everyone´s a winner
Whether a tradition or simply a bad habit, we have trouble finding a loser in any electoral race, a party leader who will openly concede defeat without trying to mitigate it with excuses. Th...
EDITORIAL
Political faux pas
Democracies have rules and institutions that must be respected and served by all who represent them. Most people can appreciate that politicians who have worked hard for the past two-and-a-h...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. PAOK strikes deal with Portugal´s Ricardo Costa
2. Greek tourism rise outshines global gains
3. Dritsas announces cancellation of OLP sale
4. Electric shock in energy industry
5. Property levies inflict serious blow to housing market
6. Uncertainty on new tax system
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greek Elections 2015: Forming a government, Part 1 | LIVE
2. Greece, where everyone's a winner
3. Three days of mourning declared over death of two Greek pilots in Spain
4. Greek uncertainty weighs on low-rated eurozone bonds
5. Political faux pas
6. Europe stocks fall from seven-year high; Greek bonds drop
Today
This Week
1. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
2. SYRIZA heads for historic victory but without majority
3. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
4. Greeks fork out nearly 5 pct of their incomes on telecom services
5. Unsupervised voting
6. QE exclusion a ‘de facto Grexit’
Advertiser Link
SMART WATER Project: Outputs and conclusions of the final conference
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.