Reports: Athens wants reference to ‘social model’ in EU joint statement; bid to deflect IMF

22 March 2017
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The embattled leftist government in Athens on Tuesday essentially confirmed same-day reports claiming that the Greek side is demanding a reference to “Europe’s Social Model” in a joint statement by EU’s 27 member-states, on the occasion of a weekend commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome.

The Tsipras government is, by all accounts, attempting to deflect unrelenting IMF pressure for labor market reforms and liberalization in the country, in exchange for the Fund’s “green light” to conclude a review of the now year-long delayed second review of the Greek program (third bailout).
The leftist-rightist government coalition is also attempting to rally European support against what it views as an unabashedly “neo-liberal” agenda by the Fund in terms of the Greek program.

“The Greek proposal, in fact, marks the need for the EU’s consistent support towards the protection of workers, which will have multiple benefits for European integration,” was the statement circulated in the “unofficial” manner entailed in a non paper, which was sent to the local mass media.
The information out of Athens comes the same day as a report by ANSA, which cited sources, claims negotiations over a text for the final declaration at Saturday’s commemorative summit in Rome to “have ended successfully”.

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