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The new strong man of Greek finances

14 January 2014 / 18:01:07  GRReporter
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In connection with the scenarios for his removal from the Ministry of Finance and his appointment to the post of Governor of the Bank of Greece, Stournaras states that he is not concerned about this issue.

"I am fighting for the economy, I am interested in the present because this battle will be long. I am not thinking about tomorrow, my mind is focused on today's battle that we must win. I do not mind these scenarios because I am not thinking about them, I have no time to think about them", states Stournaras, adding that he has excellent relations with Deputy Prime Minister Evangelos Venizelos and enjoys the support of the Prime Minister.

"We have achieved 80% of what we need to do, we have removed the causes of the crisis, we have a primary surplus and we have neutralised the current account deficit", states the Minister of Finance, specifying that the Troika will arrive in Athens in a few days.

"We want to slow down the developments in order to have available the final December data," says Stournaras.

As for the issue of mass layoffs, the Minister of Finance states that "no company is raising today the question of mass layoffs, we have comprehensive evidence that they are not necessary."

"I think that the Troika will agree on avoiding mass layoffs" the Minister of Finance points out, reiterating that "70% of the excess revenues generated from the primary surplus will be allocated to the most vulnerable social groups."

Meanwhile, the Minister of Finance has declared himself against any new haircut of the Greek debt.

"The issue of the nominal debt haircut has not been raised, the parliamentary procedures and the constitutions of the 18 eurozone member states do not allow this", said Stournaras, adding that "a similar procedure would destabilise the eurozone" and that "the unilateral write-off of the debt means exiting the euro."

"The constitution of each of the 18 eurozone member states does not allow the reduction of the nominal value of the debt," states the Minister of Finance.

"The PSI procedure is one thing, but causing loss to the German or Austrian nationals or to the citizens of countries poorer than Greece by haircutting the debt is quite another. Do you believe that we would be able to reduce the debt with those countries that are poorer than us?" asks Stournaras.

The Minister of Finance however insists on the debt-restructuring scenario. "We want debt restructuring and we will achieve it", he states, confident that Greece's partners will take the necessary measures, and points out that the relevant discussion will start in February.

Tags: Minister of FinanceYiannis StournarasStavros PapastavrouAdviser to Prime Minister
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