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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 15-05-25

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] The comprehensive agreement should include the debt issue, Alternate FM Chountis says
  • [02] Defence Minister: We will not pay the installments without agreement
  • [03] Greek budget primary surplus up in Jan-April

  • [01] The comprehensive agreement should include the debt issue, Alternate FM Chountis says

    Alternate Foreign Minister for European Affairs Nikos Chountis on Monday, in statements to MEGA TV, stressed the need for a comprehensive agreement with the partners and creditors that will also include debt reduction.

    "If the problem of debt is not solved, all the rest cannot help the situation," he said.

    In that framework he noted that the next loan installment to the IMF should not be paid, even if we have the money. "This does not make any difference, however, as we do not have that money. If we do not have the money, we will not pay the IMF," he underlined.

    Asked what would happen if they insist on the current political approach regarding pension reductions and other issues, he replied: "We will not retreat. We will proceed with the implementation of our programme ... whatever it is required."

    Chountis criticised Schaeuble for his stance, saying that he has not understood the February 20 Eurogroup decision and behaves as if he owns the Eurogroup. According to Chountis, the agreement did not provide for the implementation of the previous programme, but for an evaluation of a national programme, a programme of reforms.

    He reiterated the "red lines" of the government in the negotiation. Neither the ECB nor the European Commission can ask for changes in pensions, labour and social security issues since they do not lie within their own jurisdiction.

    Finally, he estimated "we are close to an agreement, provided that the leaders willingness, after the EU summit in Riga, is sincere and that they have all understood that there is no time for delays."

    [02] Defence Minister: We will not pay the installments without agreement

    ANA/MPA---"We will not pay the instalments if we do not reach an agreement with our lenders until June 5" said Defence Minister and Independent Greeks leader Panos Kammenos speaking to private ANT1 TV on Monday.

    "Greece, is paying its instalments to the creditors from August 2014 and the expenses for the state's operation without having received a single euros" said Kammenos adding "Greece can't continue to pay the instalments without allowing the state to operate" he said.

    He estimated that there will be an agreement with Greece's lenders within the next days. As he said, this deal will be within the context of the people's mandate. "Nobody knows the final agreement yet. We must support the negotiators. I believe that in the next hours there will be an agreement" said Kammenos adding "I believe that the agreement will be tabled and voted by the majority of the parliament's deputies.

    [03] Greek budget primary surplus up in Jan-April

    ANA/MPA---Greek state budget showed a primary surplus of 2.103 billion euros in the January-April period, the Finance ministry said on Monday.

    In an announcement on state budget execution, on an amended cash basis the budget showed a deficit of 510 million euros in the four month period, from a deficit of 1.146 billion euros in the corresponding period last year and a budget target for a deficit of 2.918 billion euros. The primary surplus was 2.103 billion euros, from a primary surplus of 1.046 billion last year and a budget target for a surplus of 310 million euros.

    State budget net revenues totalled 15.815 billion euros in the January-April period, up 2.4 pct from targets, while regular budget revenues totalled 14.290 billion euros, down 0.7 pct from targets. Tax revenues totalled 12.221 billion euros in the four-month period, down 6.7 pct from targets. The ministry attributed this development to an 11.4 pct shortfall in direct taxes (4.869 billion euros) and to a 3.4 pct decline in indirect taxes (7.352 billion). VAT revenues were down 6.5 pct from targets while other consumption taxes surpassed targets by 5.7 pct and other non-tax revenues surpassed targets by 38.9 pct.

    Tax returns totalled 943 million euros in the four-month period, up 100 million from budget targets. Public Investment Program revenues totalled 1.525 billion euros, up 465 million from targets.

    State budget spending totalled 16.324 billion euros in the January-April period, down 2.037 bln from targets, while regular budget spending totalled 15.503 billion, down 1.628 billion from targets and down 2.4 pct from the same period last year. Public Investment Program spending totalled 821 million euros, down 409 million from targets and down 577 million from last year.


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