Samaras argues political fears blocked 2014 review

Samaras argues political fears blocked 2014 review

Former prime minister Antonis Samaras believes that political reasons prevented the troika from concluding the bailout review with his government in late 2014 and granting Greece the debt relief it had been promised.

Speaking to Sunday’s Kathimerini, Samaras, now a New Democracy MP, said that the creditors realized that snap elections were on the horizon in Greece due to difficulties in electing a new president of the republic and chose not to reach a deal with his coalition.

“The review did not close for political reasons: Our lenders realized that we would probably not manage to elect a new president and be forced to head to snap elections,” he said, arguing that the fiscal shortfall needed to conclude negotiations was around 600 million euros.

“The lenders feared that if Greece got the final installment of 7.2 billion euros in December 2014, the money would be in danger of ending up in the hands of the next government, which was threatening to blow everything sky-high,” Samaras said. “That is when we saw them start increasing their demands so that the review would never be completed.”

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