ECONOMY

Bondholders’ rep: PSI was overdue since 2010

bondholders-rep-psi-was-overdue-since-2010

The private sector participation in the writedown of Greece’s sovereign debt (PSI) should not have taken place in 2012 but at the start of the economic crisis in 2010, argues a Greek legal expert who was among those who negotiated the deal three and a half years ago from the side of the bondholders.

Yannis Manuelides, the first non-British partner at the Allen & Overy law firm that represented private investors in the PSI talks, tells Kathimerini, “In hindsight, given the shortage of time and options, the result of the debt restructuring was the best possible.”

However, he cautions that a fresh restructuring should not be a priority right now as the servicing of the debt will be manageable for several years to come. He also advises that some measures ought to be adopted “to avoid the Greek debt being dubbed problematic.”

Manuelides, who has also helped in the preparation of various Greek bills and the planning for state sell-off fund TAIPED, argues that what is missing is a public debate on where the taxes go. “If we wish to move on, we must review our overall tax policy and debate how we will make the most of our assets,” he says, adding that “had the European states known the cost for saving Greece, they would have rather saved their own banks instead.”