Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras will meet representatives of the country’s international lenders from IMF, ECB and EU on Tuesday afternoon. The meeting follows tough negotiations between Greek key ministers and high-ranking officials on one side and the Troika’s representatives as well as technical teams on the other side.
Antonis Samaras has made it clear that no additional austerity measures will be taken, and underlined the need for a gradual reduction of corporate tax in a bid to boost entrepreneurship, with a view to a single tax rate (flat rate) of 15 percent on enterprises.
But the Troika does not seem willing to unbend pressure. It allegedly went so far to blackmail the Greek government with the usual sentence “Either this or that… or no bailout tranche money.”
According to economic news website Capital.gr the outstanding issues between Samaras government and the Troika are:
1) the emergency property tax for 2013: Troika pressures for extension of the E.P.T. for another year, Greek government wants to embed it into a new unified property tax.
2) Public sector: Greeks want to apply first the labor reserve and remove from the public sector first those who have violated the Code of Public servants, have psychological problems or those who submitted fake education degrees. The Troika wants that all the personnel in the public sector undergoes evaluation and not just 50,000-60,000 people.
3) Debts to tax offices and social security funds. The number of repayment installments is still under dispute.
4) Private debts: final regulations on repayment installments to take place after the recapitalisation of the banks and according to income criteria.
5) Value Added Tax: The Troika doe snot accept V.A.T. (FPA) reduction in the catering and the heating oil.
Tuesday’s meeting between Samaras and the Troika is considered ‘crucial’. However they two sides are not expected to sit together so long until they agree on all points. Similar to papal election conclave.
No, white smoke will most likely not rise from the chimney of Maximos Mansion -the headquarters of the Greek government -.
No, we will probably will not proudly announce “habemus euros” today.
Negotiations are expected to continue…