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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 08-12-19

The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Debate on State-Budget

  • [01] Debate on State-Budget

    The debate on the state-budget continues in Parliament in the presence of Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis. The debate is to conclude Sunday midnight with a vote. Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis stressed that the budget was prepared and is being debated amid the global financial crisis, while earlier Tourist Development Minister Aris Spiliotopoulos had appeared certain that the ND government has not used all its political reserves that will reverse the situation. PASOK (Panhellenic Socialist Movement) cadres speak of a "virtual budget of an absent government that is collapsing." From their side, ND ministers and MPs are accusing the main opposition party for populism and alarmism, while the rest of the opposition has criticized the government over its economic policy. Meanwhile, a rally was held before the Parliament in protest of the state-budget under the initiative of GSEE (Greek General Confederation of Labour) and ADEDY (Supreme Administration of Greek Civil Servants Trade Unions). They both presented the President of the Parliament with vote demanding the withdrawal of the state-budget. Political leaders will address the House on Sunday and the debate will conclude with the prime minister's speech. Alogoskoufis' SpeechFinance Minister George Alogoskoufis stressed that the debate on the 2009 state-budget is taking place amid an unprecedented financial uncertainty all over the world, adding that have changed to the worse in the world economy in the last year.However, he stated that with the government's initiatives on the 2009 state-budget, the government is exhausting all margins it has to boost employment and help low-income earners. Moreover, he said that the margins would be wider if the public debt passed to the present government by past ones had not been that big.Mr Alogoskoufis admitted that global uncertainty is especially big, adding that the latest indications show that a 2.7% development rate, as set by the new budget, is a difficult goal. However, this does not mean that the budget is neither temporal nor in the air as the opposition wishes to convince us.The minister reported that national concession is necessary so that the problems are tackled and a big part of the society should abandon its trade unionist logic. He also criticized strongly PASOK, accusing it of promising all to everybody and of living in its world. Its promises cost 11 billion euros per year, he said.Mr Alogoskoufis commented on Mr Simitis' report on the International Monetary Fund. He stressed that he was at the ECOFIN extraordinary meeting in Paris yesterday and that all agreed that the crisis has affected all. Moreover, that the crisis would be dealt with coordinated efforts within the framework of the Stability Pact. In parallel, he said that Greece's recourse to the International Monetary Fund was not raised, adding that it is not right to slide to irresponsibility and populism amid a crisis. Tourist Development Minister Aris Spiliotopoulos also addressed Friday's meeting and referred to the 14 measures on Tourism announced yesterday by the prime minister. He also said that with ND's unused political reserves the government would reverse the situation. Pangalos' ReplyMr Alogoskoufis is supposed to have presented and audacious policy and failed to materialize the ND's promises made in 2004, adding that the deficit rose to 7%, including to that the expenses programme on national defence. The EU issued a special directive not allowing this to happen. Moreover, Mr Alogoskoufis should explain what has been happening between 2007 and 2008, as he had spoken of a 1.6% deficit, when now he says it will be 2.5%. He also reported that the deficit of current transactions was 6% when the ND took over and now it is 18%, making Greece a world champion. GSEE- ADEDY: The State-Budget Should not be Implemented During their rally before the Parliament, GSEE and ADEDY Trade Unionists described the budget unjust and anti-social, demanding not to be implemented.GSEE President Giannis Panagopoulos foresaw that austerity would rise, calling on all employees to see that each euro offered by public funds to end to the employees and not Banks. Commenting on the take over of GSEE's offices by groups of youths, Mr Panagopoulos criticized them, adding that social actions are not suspended with provocations. The crisis is ahead, he concluded, and cannot be tackled unless the government's policy is abolished. ADEDY President Spyros Papaspyros asked from the people and Trade Unionists to adopt a new policy that will be guaranteeing the rights of the many.Asked by journalists on Mr Verellis' proposal to have Finance Minister who will enjoy ND and PASOK's support, Mr Papaspyros said this does not interest the majority of the employees, describing the proposal just an idea.GSEE President Giannis Panagopoulos described the proposal fireworks, not ruling out similar proposals on MPs.

    Relative Articles: Debate on Budget ContinuesSources: , 105.8, NA-PA

    News item: 16933

    The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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