Tuesday Jul 22, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
29o C
22o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Coalition unable to conclude talks with lenders

 Democratic Left leader Fotis Kouvelis draws line at labor reforms
Democratic Left party leader Fotis Kouvelis is seen at the end of a press briefing following a meeting with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and PASOK chief Evangelos Venizelos in Parliament in Athens, yesterday.

Greece’s three-party coalition government faces its toughest challenge since coming to power in June after leaders were unable to agree Tuesday on some of the structural reforms demanded by the troika, a development which has complicated the process of Athens receiving its next bailout tranche.

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos and Democratic Left chief Fotis Kouvelis met Tuesday with the aim of tying up the loose ends in Greek negotiations with the troika. While the 13.5 billion euros of austerity measures have been virtually agreed, differences remained over some of the structural reforms.

Following the meeting, it quickly became apparent that these gaps had not been bridged. Kouvelis said that his party would not vote for the labor reforms being demanded by the troika, which include a cap being set on compensation for sacked workers.

“If the unacceptable demands of the troika are met, they will increase sackings, unemployment and the recession,” said Kouvelis, adding that he felt the troika was aiming to “flatten” any working rights that remain.

After Kouvelis, Venizelos also expressed reluctance to back the measures. As Samaras wants to pass all the fiscal measures as one bill and all the structural reforms as another, the only way PASOK or Democratic Left could display their opposition to changes in labor legislation would be to reject the whole package.

“It is unjustified and provocative that the issue of labor reforms should be brought up now,” stated Venizelos, who said the changes would not contribute toward Greece meetings its fiscal targets.

Two-and-half hours after the meeting, Samaras emerged to give a short statement in which he essentially called on his coalition partners to rethink their stance.

“I am well aware of what is at stake for the country today,” he said. “We have already changed a lot of the troika’s initial suggestions, including those relating to the labor market. Negotiations are continuing.

“I do not even want to think about what could happen if I do not keep a steady hand on the wheel. I am looking ahead, asking for the broadest possible unity. Those of us who dare will save Greece.”

Another issue that cropped up during the talks was objections from PASOK to an apparent proposal by the German Finance Ministry for the creation of an escrow account into which Greece’s loan tranches and tax revenues would be deposited and for which there would be some level of outside control. There is also a suggestion that the Germans would like there to be an automatic mechanism to limit public spending if the deficit is not within agreed targets.

“We are not a protectorate,” said Venizelos. “Our partners and the troika have to understand that.”

Earlier in the day, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble had referred to “mechanisms” and “automatic stabilizers” without being specific.

“It will be politically difficult for Greece to accept,” he admitted.

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday October 23, 2012 (22:13)  
Golden Dawn using legal tricks to delay trial
Anastasiades due to vist Athens on Monday for talks
Greek Orthodox church provides refuge to Palestinians
Greece backs UN resolution demanding access to MH17 crash site
Ryanair to table bid for Cyprus Airways
Ryanair will probably submit an expression of interest in troubled Cyprus Airways, which is up for sale, Chief Executive Michael O’Leary said on Tuesday. The Cypriot government in mid-July i...
Nicosia seeks buyers for bank in US probe
Cyprus was looking for buyers to take over branches on the island of Tanzania-based bank FBME, which faces a US money-laundering probe, after placing the operation under administration. The ...
Inside Business
TRACK & FIELD
Athens, the Marathon capital of the world for good
Paco Borao, the man who restored Athens as the Marathon capital of the world with the establishment at the Olympic Sports Center of the headquarters of the International Association of Marat...
TRACK & FIELD
Pole vault record on same day as three doping cases
Greek track and field had a mixed weekend, as on the same day as Katerina Stefanidi matched the national record in pole vault as well as the leading result in Europe so far this season, thre...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Unequal after death
The dead are dead and the slain are slain, whether they are Malaysian, Dutch, Palestinian or Israeli, whether they are the innocent victims of a civilian plane that is shot down (we still do...
EDITORIAL
Chinese investment
The relationship between Greece and China has become one of major strategic importance. Beijing threw its support behind Athens during a period when the country was going through particularl...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Golden Dawn using legal tricks to delay trial
2. Anastasiades due to vist Athens on Monday for talks
3. Ryanair to table bid for Cyprus Airways
4. Nicosia seeks buyers for bank in US probe
5. Greek Orthodox church provides refuge to Palestinians
6. Greece backs UN resolution demanding access to MH17 crash site
more news
Today
This Week
1. Unequal after death
2. Chinese investment
3. Greeks getting better at recycling, though still Europe's laggards
4. Greek sovereign debt at 174.1 percent of GDP in first quarter
5. Piraeus prosecutor investigating use of funds for building renovation
6. Shares in Greek renewable energy firm drop in trade debut
Today
This Week
1. China and Greece agree to further cooperation in transportation, infrastructure
2. Ex-Credit Suisse banker taps lesson for Greek rebound
3. The cost of excellence
4. Pay-TV booms as cash-strapped Greeks shun depressing news shows
5. Greece seen in third bailout as bonds not enough, economists say
6. Summer storms cause problems in Thessaloniki, spread across the country
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.