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Draft bill to overhaul Greek trading regulations

Dozens of provisions are to overhaul trading regulations in Greece and trigger the anger of milk producers, pharmacists, booksellers, bakers. The changes containing in the 191-page multi draft submitted by the Greek government to the Parliament are one more Troika-imposed precondition for the next bailout installment of some 9 billion euro expected in May.

The trading regulations are based on 50 measures proposed by OECD with the alleged aim “to  boost competition and strengthen economy” in the crisis- and austerity-hit country.

Main points:

– bread will be no longer sold by piece but it will be weighed  in front of the consumer.

– milk will be sold in three categories and respectively price ranges. “Fresh milk” tag will be scrapped and new tags like be introduced.

– book prices cap will be scrapped except for books of literature.

-changes in the pharmacies ownership with the effect that a licensed pharmacist may open a chain. Pharmacies may open in other stores like supermarkets and will have to open six days per week.

The draft bill contains also provisions for the:

– reduction in fines imposed by tax authorities.

– increase of the amount tax offices and insurance funds can seize from bank accounts. The amount of 1,000 euro to be left in the bank account is increased to 1,500 euro.

– laid-off civil servants will receive compensation of 15,000 euro.

The volume of the draft bill is immense to be handled and posted here, therefore some useful links in Greek are here in zougla.gr and newsit.gr.

The voting will take place on Sunday.

PS I don’t remember, bakers weighing bread in front of me in Germany but if the OECD and the Troika believe this is important, I have nothing to say in the perspective of saving €0.05 per loaf 🙂 I suppose the same range of saving will be valid for milk.

As for the pharmacies, no matter where they are located, if they have one or 50 owners, prescription medicine will not be cheaper as it is the health authorities that fix the prices and thus “according to the cheapest prices in three EU-member states.” That means in clear words: if X-drug is sold for €27 in UK, Bulgaria and Romania, Greek health care authority will pay this specific price even if the commercial price in Greece is €35. The same is valid for generics.

 

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