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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-06-25

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] EU: Greek deficit at 2% of GDP in 08

  • [01] EU: Greek deficit at 2% of GDP in 08

    The European Commission on Wednesday said it expected Greece's fiscal deficit at 2.0 percent of GDP both in 2008 and 2009, after ending the previous year at 2.8 pct.

    The EU's executive, in a report on Eurozone's public finances for 2008, published in Brussels, stressed that Greece's 2008 budget envisaged a fiscal deficit of 1.6 percent of GDP -including some temporary measures accounting for 0.1 pct of GDP.

    The report said that budget revenues were expected to rise with the help of a rise in fuel consumption tax, a new tax plan on heating oil, higher taxation on real estate and more efficient efforts to combating tax evasion and fraud. On spending, the budget envisages higher hand outs on military personnel pay increases, higher pension payments, improving social benefits to low-income households and significant cutbacks in intermediate consumption.

    The Commission said its higher estimate over the country's fiscal deficit represented a less favourable scenario over economic growth and an evaluation of the financial impact of measures taken by the government. The report stressed that the likely impact from reforms in civil administration and taxation were optimistic and noted that total revenues were expected to rise by 0.25 percent and spending to fall by 0.75 pct of GDP.

    The Commission forecasts that the country's structural deficit -excluding temporary measures- will improve by 0.5 pct of GDP this year. It also said that the Greek public debt will reach 92.5 pct of GDP this year, or 1.25 pct higher compared with provisions included in an Updated Stability Pact. The Commission said high primary surpluses, privatization and a strong growth rate could contribute to a further reduction of the public debt to around 90 pct of GDP in 2009.

    Caption: The euro symbol sculpture by Frankfurt artist Ottmar Horl outside the European Central Bank in Frankfurt 07 May 2003. ANA-MPA / EPA / Arne Dedert

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