OPINION

Greece still not absorbing funds

Remarks by EU Regional Policy Commissioner Danuta Hubner that Greece ranks at the bottom of EU tables regarding the absorption of community funds spent on road, railway and port projects say a lot about the incompetence of Greece’s political officials and the state apparatus in general. Her words shatter the impression cultivated by Greece’s idle politicians that progress on public works is stymied by a lack of money. The money is there, it’s just that the ministries have not hammered out any plans for how to use it. Absorption of EU funds for the construction of roads, railways and ports stands at 88 percent for Ireland, 64 percent for Spain and a meager 46 percent for Greece. All this at a time when the country’s lack of infrastructure is putting the brakes on economic and tourism growth. This is the bitter truth that government ministers are trying to conceal with advertisements in the media about a supposed frenzy of construction projects.