Greek FinMin again says high ‘fiscal space’ precludes implementation of pension cuts, lower tax-free income threshold

26 September 2018
738 Views

Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos on Wednesday continued to insist that already legislated austerity measures – another round of pension cuts in 2019 and a lowering of the tax-free annual income threshold in 2020 – are not necessary, echoing the standing position of the leftist-rightist coalition government that enough “fiscal space” will be achieved in coming years.

Tsakalotos reiterated the poll-trailing Tsipras government’s position that already ambitious primary budget surplus targets (3.5 percent of annual GDP) will not only be achieved, but exceeded.

In reply, the political opposition has charged that fiscal targets are being met through increasingly high taxes and failure by the Greek state to cover arrears to the private sector, concerns that are reportedly shared by some institutional creditors and market analysts.

Tsakalotos also promised that archaeological sites and hospitals in Greece will not be transferred to a “super fund” created under previous memorandum bailouts, while he said countervailing measures, which accompany the 2019 and 2020 austerity measures, will also be implemented.

In taking yet another swipe at the IMF, considered by the coalition government as the strictest and most “neo-liberal” of the one-time “troika” or “quartet” of creditors, Tsakalotos maintained that “until July 2018 it (Fund) said the primary budget surplus was at 1.4 percent, now it says it is 3.5 percent. That’s why we’re in another world; and we’re out of the memorandums, and we have fiscal space so that we don’t need to reduce pensions and not apply the lower tax-free threshold, as well as to present the biggest portion of the countervailing measures,” he said from Parliament’s podium.

You may be interested

BBC: The last speakers of Ancient Sparta
GREECE
shares36 views
GREECE
shares36 views

BBC: The last speakers of Ancient Sparta

Panos - Feb 26, 2021

As you enter the mountainous village of Pera Melana in Greece’s southern Peloponnese peninsula, you’re likely to hear the roar of…

Coronavirus Greece: 1,784 new cases, 367 intubated, 39 deaths
GREECE
shares55 views
GREECE
shares55 views

Coronavirus Greece: 1,784 new cases, 367 intubated, 39 deaths

Panos - Feb 26, 2021

Greece announced today that the new laboratory confirmed cases of the disease recorded in the last 24 hours are 1,784, of…

60% of Greeks say they feel worse due to Covid-19 lockdown
GREECE
shares46 views
GREECE
shares46 views

60% of Greeks say they feel worse due to Covid-19 lockdown

Panos - Feb 26, 2021

Greeks say their daily lives have become worse after a year of experiencing the Covid-19 lockdown measures. A survey conducted by Focus…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.