“Germany will do everything it can to help Greece for a successful EU presidency,” said German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a joint press conference with Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras. “We are beginning to see light in the tunnel ,” she concluded stressing that Germany supports the tough decisions in Greece and that she sees the first fruits .
Angela Merkel noted that ” Greece has made impressive progress,” noting that “such an example is the achievement of the primary surplus “. She referred to the “substantial progress” achieved compared to what it was discussed 10 months ago and she recognized “the sacrifices made by the Greek people”.
But Merkel would not be …Merkel if she would not add a “but” to all the praises.
But “there are issues that have not been fully resolved and the budget of 2014 is a problem, however the prime minister told me that Greece will do whatever it can to meet its commitments,” she added with a big greedy grind.
Angela Merkel advised Greeks that “in order to see better days, a budget balance and structural changes have to be achieved.”
As for investment, Merkel said an investment bank would be created according to the model of the German investment bank .
“With regards to the fiscal adjustment we met our targets and in some areas we went even further,” Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said adding “we should not stop the effort.” However , apart from the financial improvements, the Prime Minister noted that “we correct the structural imbalances that existed in Greece. There is no doubt that more needs to be done.
“Achieving primary surplus is the first sign of success ,” Samaras said and pointed out that the targeted primary surplus was related to the 2014 and not to 2013 , “but Greece made it.”
“Remember how was Greece 15 months ago ,” he said to make a comparison with the present.
Samaras underlined that he did not come to Germany in order to negotiate and that “the Greek government negotiates with the troika , not with Germany” he said.
Earlier , the two leaders had a working lunch. The Greek prime minister visited Berlin following an invitation by the German Chancellor.
I remember that Greek media had written that Samaras was visiting Merkel in order to negotiate a further “debt haircut”. I may be wrong and I just had a dream or a hallucination due to hunger caused by the austerity measures that sum up in a Greek success story and primary surplus of a couple of million euro.
PS the menu of the working lunch has been kept secret. Rumors claim that Merkel-Samaras enjoyed “foam of primary surplus over an empty puff pastry pocket” as appetizer, “finely chopped taxpayers roll-ups on a sauce mirror of spicy austerity measures & structural reforms and mashed desperation dumplings” as main course and “dark chocolate train stuffed with jobless wishes in a crocant tunnel” as dessert. The salad was simple: mixed eurozone with south sprinkles.