More efforts to cut the price of milk

The Development Ministry estimates the fiscal cost of reducing the value-added tax on milk from 13 to 6.5 percent at 50 million euros, according to sources. Although Deputy Development Minister Gerasimos Giakoumatos said on Wednesday that the VAT on milk in Greece is higher than in other European countries, he added that the ministry has not asked the Finance Ministry to lower it.

Given that making this change would be particularly difficult as it also requires the approval of the country’s creditors, the deputy minister discussed alternative ways of reducing the price of milk with dairy industry and supermarket representatives on Wednesday.

“Milk is not expensive,” claimed Giakoumatos. “However its price did not drop after the regulations,” he added, referring to the regulatory changes made in spring following the recommendations of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. He went on to ask the industry and the retailers to show some social solidarity, but stopped short of asking for a price drop on the record.

However after FrieslandCampina Hellas announced a 5-cent decline per liter as of next Monday, the other industries are believed to be ready to follow suit.

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