ECONOMY

No time for tax cuts

Nobel Prize-winning economist Christopher Pissarides said on Wednesday that a debt restructuring is not a viable option for Greece and that it would severely hurt the country?s ties with the European Central Bank after the Frankfurt-based lender clearly opposed the idea.

Pissarides said he is against using tax cuts as a means of helping boost economic growth on the grounds that the country needs revenue to help improve its fiscal situation.

Tax cuts could be delivered if the number of civil servants in Greece dropped and the government saved on its wage bill as there is no more room for further reductions to salaries and pensions, he told reporters in Athens.

He urged the ruling Socialists to gradually sell off all state-run enterprises, adopt a more flexible social security system and drastically cut red tape for businesses. Greece is the worst country in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) when it comes to administrative costs and bureaucracy, he added.