Debt-crippled Greece’s coalition government rushes to seal a new set of austerity measures to secure vital new bailout aid to avert default in November, as its Y 2011 fiscal deficit was revised upwards to 9.4% of GDP Monday.
The Greek fiscal shortfall last year stood at 19.7-B Euros, 3% higher that previous estimates, still down from 10.7% in Y 2010 and 15.6% in Y 2009, when the debt crisis broke out, the country’s Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) announced.
Experts attributed the gap to the higher than anticipated recession.
Despite rounds of austerity measures implemented in the past two years, Greek debt in Y 2011 reached 355.7-B Euros, or 170.6% of GDP, according to the updated official figures. In Y 2009, it stood at 129.7% and in Y 2010 at 148.3% of GDP.
The aim under bailout deals clinched with international lenders since Y 2010, is a decrease to pre-crisis sustainable debt levels via a painful austerity and reform program.
In the short-term, the Greek government seeks to finalize in coming days a fresh 13.5-B Euro austerity package to unlock 31.5-B Euro bailout tranche by mid-November in time to stave off a disorderly bankruptcy and exit from the Euro which could destabilize more European economies.
Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is due to hold a final meeting on the issue with his 2 coalition partners Tuesday.
Athens needs to vote the measures through the Greek parliament by the next Euro Group meeting on 12 November which could give the Green Light for the disbursement of the tranche. Without it, Greece runs out of cash on 16 November.
“Time runs out. If we wish to get the installment before cash runs out, we must speed up…People will get hungry, if we do not secure the tranche,” Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras stressed, addressing the parliament’s economic committee Monday.
Shortly earlier, on Samaras’ order, deputy Nikos Stavroyannis was expelled from the ruling conservative New Democracy party’s parliamentary group, after an interview with a local daily Sunday.
Mr. Stavroyannis said that he plans to vote against the new austerity package, because he believes that the planned fresh cuts on salaries, pensions and tax increases are unfair and will not resolve the crisis.
The 3-party coalition now holds 177 seats in the 300-member assembly. According to local media reports, more deputies of the 3 parties supporting the government could follow on Mr.Stavroyannis’ steps, due to increasing social reactions to the harsh policies.
Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr.
Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr. writes and publishes The Red Roadmaster’s Technical Report on the US Major Market Indices, a weekly, highly-regarded financial market letter, read by opinion makers, business leaders and organizations around the world.
Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr has studied the global financial and stock markets since 1984, following a successful business career that included investment banking, and market and business analysis. He is a specialist in equities/commodities, and an accomplished chart reader who advises technicians with regard to Major Indices Resistance/Support Levels.
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