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BoG Governor: Greece’s recovery program still fragile; growth in 2014

“Greek government should push ahead with structural reforms aiming at boosting the economy,” Governor of Bank of Greece Giorgos Provopoulos told the Parliament on Tuesday. Presenting the central bank’s interim monetary policy program, Provopoulos advised the government also to avoid the imposition of new taxes in order to raise revenues and warned of the risks of political uncertainty. The governor predicted growth to start in 2014.

“It is a national necessity to safeguard the achievements made so far and at such a great cost, to avert backsliding and to cover the distance that remains for the country’s growth potential to be strengthened,” Provopoulos told Greek lawmakers.

In the report, the Bank of Greece forecasts that the economy will emerge from a six-year recession and begin to recover next year, trimming its recession forecast for 2013 to 4.0 percent from a previous -4.6 percent. It also projects that the country will attain a primary budget surplus this year, excluding debt servicing costs, expecting the current account balance to hit a surplus.

Yet, Provopoulos warned, a polarized political climate poses risks to the economic recovery program.

The central bank chief also said that in order for Greece to achieve the fiscal targets set by its international creditors, the government will need to focus on revenue raising measures such as broadening the tax base and clamping down more forcefully on tax evasion rather than on imposing new levies.

He called on the coalition government to persist with efforts to streamline the public sector, stressing the need for defunct state services to be abolished or merged as well as the acceleration of administrative reforms aimed at cost cutting.

Provopoulos further expressed the need for better oversight of the country’s social security funds, a speedier justice system and an improved tax collection mechanism.”(full article)

while awaiting for growth,

we remain,

with best regards

KTG

PS the article could also have the title: the Governor of Bank of Greece wishes Merry Christmas

 

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