Greek recovery plan to focus on green, digital transformation, employment, investments

Greek recovery plan to focus on green, digital transformation, employment, investments

The Greek government presented on Wednesday its preliminary proposal for the distribution of support from the European Union’s coronavirus recovery fund, totalling 32 billion euros.

Greece is to get 19.4 billion euros in grants and 12.7 billion in cheap loans over the next six years.

The main pillars of the Greek plan are a green and digital transformation, employment and social cohesion, private investments and transformation of the economy, said Deputy Finance Minister Theodoros Skylakakis, who presented the plan.

The green transformation will be funded with 6.2 billion euros (38% of total funds). Some of the projects are the interconnection of Crete and the Cyclades with the electricity network of the mainland, the simplification of licensing procedures for RES, the energy upgrade of buildings, the reform of urban planning, the electromobility (including in public transport) biodiversity, the natural environment and protection against natural disasters.

The digital transformation will receive 2.1 billion euros (13% of the total) and will be allocated for the pre-installation of fiber optics in buildings, the infrastructure for the transition to 5G technology, the digital transformation of the state and companies and tax incentives.

The third pillar of employment, skills and social cohesion will receive 4.1 billion euros (25% of the total). It will include active and passive labor market policies (subsidizing labor over unemployment), modernizing labor law (skills, incentives for active labor), the modernization of vocational education and training, the individual health record and the digital transformation of health services, the fight against discrimination and the rationalization-boosting of state benefits.

Finally, private investments and the transformation of the economy, with be funded with 4 billion euros (24% of total). It envisages the complete codification of tax legislation, the modernization of the public administration, the fight against money laundering and corruption, the acceleration of the administration of justice, the establishment of a Credit Bureau and a Credit Expansion Observatory (to avoid an increase in “red” loans), promoting research and innovation and linking university research with production.

All the projects and investments will have to be completed by the end of 2026.

The draft plan was submitted to the European Commission on November 18 while the final version will be presented in February or March 2021. The Commission is expected to approve the plan at the end of spring.

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