Bloomberg: Athens wants to lower fiscal target for 2020-22

9 May 2019
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Bloomberg on Wednesday pointed to a Greek government initiative to persuade institutional creditors to allow a lowering of the target for an annual primary budget surplus – as a percentage of GDP – to 2.5 percent, from 2020 to 2022.

The current target, which has been agreed to by the current Tsipras government, is 3.5 percent of GDP, and, in fact, has been exceeded for the past three years.

The Bloomberg report coincides with an ongoing visit in Athens by creditors’ top auditors, as part of the third “enhanced supervision” review, as well as the abrupt announcement on Tuesday afternoon by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras of tax breaks, lower VAT rates and even a partial restoration of a pension bonus, to some retirees.

Speaking alongside Tsipras on Tuesday, during a live broadcast by the state television network, Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos nevertheless again made it clear that “we promised to given creditors 3.5 percent of GDP for servicing the debt, and that’s what creditors will get.”

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