Promises are just not enough

The problem with the Greek economy cannot be solved with public relations stunts. Our eurozone partners and the international markets waited patiently for the previous administration, under New Democracy Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, to tackle the fiscal crisis and adopt reforms to curb public spending. That government failed to do this. It reneged on all the assurances it had given our partners and dealt a serious blow to the country’s credibility. Now the world sees a new government that appears reluctant to go back on any of the generous promises it made in its pre-election campaign, as though the country’s economy were robust. At the same time, Europe and the markets have learned that the state will be paying a high price for its deal with the workers at Piraeus port and that the current prime minister, George Papandreou, has decided to follow a policy of moderate reform. Neither the markets nor our European partners can be convinced by PR talk and meaningless commitments. As things stand, they simply no longer believe us. What they are demanding are immediate changes and concrete results.

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