Eurogroup not yet finished with Greece

Eurogroup not yet finished with Greece 2
The head of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), Mr Klaus Regling, said on Thursday that the Eurogroup and the institutions plan to discuss with incoming Greek government following the July 7 general elections all matters concerning Greece.

Regling made the comments prompted by his concern that the relief measures implemented by the Tsipras government may jeopardise the 3.5% target for the primary surplus in 2019, something that “the European Commission also confirmed in its report”.

However, he underlined that he is taking into account the government’s position that, despite these measures, the target will be met as it is still “only the first half of the year” and concerns reflect estimates rather than actual results.

Regling referred to specific measures such as the so-called 13rd pension (a bonus to supplement pensions), social benefits, the abolition of the tax-free threshold – which is considered a growth measure – as well as the changes in the law for the Hellenic Corporation of Assets and Participations (HCAP) which, as he said, “is a clear violation of the agreement”. The changes were not held after consulting the institutions, he said, as had been agreed.

“We will return to all these with the new government, and we will work with any government the Greek people select,” concluded Regling.