Saturday November 1, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
18o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Banks hold the key to growth

By Alexis Papachelas

As odd as it may seem, Greece is beginning to stabilize and move forward. I am not oblivious to the pain and suffering brought on by the crisis, nor the new challenges that lie ahead when the austerity measures for 2013 start to bite. But our European partners – under pressure from other forces as well – have decided to put an end to speculation about Greece’s future in the eurozone. At the same time, the situation is beginning to improve in the rest of Europe as well, as Spain appears to have dodged the bailout bullet, and Italy and France are now able to borrow on reasonable terms.

Given the relatively positive environment overall, Greece will most likely start regaining some of its lost credibility, from the markets, from depositors who have taken their money abroad and even from investors. This is a vital part of recovery, because without faith in Greece’s future in the eurozone, no one can estimate how much further the country might tumble into the abyss of recession.

On the domestic front things also seem to be gaining momentum, starting with the justice system and oversight mechanisms that are getting into gear. As much as some may argue that the recent wave of prosecutions and investigations are simply foils to divert people’s attention from the measures, the country has never before seen such powerful people being put under scrutiny and in some cases even behind bars. The people see this as a sign that the country is turning over a new leaf.

Much is also being done in terms of improving the operation of the state mechanism, from the management of hospitals to the promotion of non-cash transactions that are so important in getting a handle on tax evasion. Is this enough to get Greece out of the mess? Of course not. The biggest challenge is to change the prevailing mentality toward entrepreneurship and business, because without these, growth will remain out of reach. To achieve this, the government will have to pass a lot of reforms that will require the support of Parliament and ensure that key positions are properly staffed.

Meanwhile, banks are the ones that will ultimately determine what kind of growth we will have in the next few years. If they choose to help out the serious small and large businesses that are suffering as a result of the crisis, the country will see healthy growth. If they opt instead to continue propping up badly managed and nonviable businesses in order to serve certain other interests, they will drive the final nail in the coffin of any healthy business that has managed to survive this far. Thankfully, there are enough Greek bankers who have been around long enough to know what is what, and who have the integrity to play an important role in the rebuilding of the Greek economy.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday Jan 3, 2013 (21:12)  
The judiciary’s responsibility
Findings raise eyebrows
Countering Turkish swagger in the Eastern Mediterranean
Time is running out in Afghanistan
Ministry swap halts talk of reshuffle as reforms eyed
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Friday appointed Nikos Dendias as defense minister, replacing outgoing Dimitris Avramopoulos, who assumes the European Commission’s immigration portfolio ne...
Turkish-Greek cooperation in Aegean helps stem flow of migrants
Closer cooperation between Greek and Turkish coast guard authorities has led to 11,000 undocumented migrants being prevented from entering Greek borders and returned to the neighboring count...
Inside News
Disposable income of households fell 10.3 pct in one year
The reduction of Greek households’ disposable incomes in 2013 compared with 2012 amounted to a total of 14 billion euros, the biggest since the start of the crisis according to data released...
Banks unhappy with bad loans bill
Bank officials are expressing serious reservations about the efficiency of the government’s bill regarding nonperforming corporate loans, arguing that the target set by the Development Minis...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Spanoulis played Zeus for Olympiakos against Neptunas
Captain Vassilis Spanoulis helped Olympiakos narrowly avoid an upset on Friday as it defeated Euroleague debutant Neptunas Klaipeda 85-81 in overtime in Lithuania to preserve its perfect sta...
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...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Spanoulis played Zeus for Olympiakos against Neptunas
2. Disposable income of households fell 10.3 pct in one year
3. Banks unhappy with bad loans bill
4. State debtor numbers grew in September
5. Reform plan among conditions
6. Ministry swap halts talk of reshuffle as reforms eyed
more news
Today
This Week
1. Archaeologists find underground vault at Amphipolis tomb
2. Man shot dead, woman injured in Vathis square attack
3. Greek retail sales rise for third month in a row
4. Cyprus’s Georgiades bets on economy for Irish-style bailout exit
5. Germany’s 10-year bonds decline before euro-area inflation data
6. New defense minister to be appointed without reshuffle
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.