Government fast-tracks omnibus on Thursday to close bailout review

17 May 2016
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The coalition government is planning to fast track the omnibus bill with the 17 remaining prior actions and automatic fiscal adjustment mechanism that are required to close the bailout program review.

After introducing the bill in Parliament on Thursday, it will be examined by the relevant committees and Parliament, before being voted upon on Sunday, 22nd of May. On Monday the Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras presided over a meeting to finalize details on the mechanism.

Every year in April Eurostat publishes its figures on the previous year. If Greece has achieved its targets, then no additional measures will be necessary. Should there be a shortfall though, a Presidential Decree will be issued to cut public expenses. There will be exemptions for certain expenses, such as welfare benefits.

If it is deemed necessary to activate the mechanism though, the measures may only be applied to achieve the targets that have been agreed upon in the existing bailout agreement. As such the mechanism is not a “new bailout”, nor does it change the scope and targets of the existing bailout agreement, as claimed by the opposition parties.

The Greek government must achieve a primary surplus of 0.5% GDP in 2016, 1.5% in 2017 and finally 3.5% in 2018.

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