The Greek government is not under pressure only due to the Refugee Crisis. The Program Review is still due, with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund to disagree on “the fiscal efforts” required by Greece. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras assured the Greeks last night, that the representatives of the “institutions” will be in Athens by March 10th. Both the Greeks and the lenders want to close the issue by end of March, then only a successfull program review will release some 5 billion loan to Greece in the context of the 3. bailout. However, the IMF – which has not decided yet whether it will participate in the 3. bailout – insists to reject Greece’s proposals on Pension Reforms. The Fund demands pension cuts from the first euro, Greece wanted to raise social contributions.
Greece’s creditors hit a roadblock over the conditions for disbursing the next portion of emergency loans to Europe’s most indebted state, as Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras pointed the finger at the International Monetary Fund for yet another delay in the review of the country’s bailout.
The delay adds to Greece’s mounting troubles as Europe’s failure to contain the influx of refugees threatens to strand thousands of migrants in the nation, potentially causing a humanitarian crisis.
Euro-area finance ministry officials, the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the IMF couldn’t agree on Monday how Greece can reach a budget surplus before interest payments of 3.5 percent of gross domestic product in the medium term, according to three people with knowledge of the talks. The Washington-based fund had a bleaker outlook on Greece’s economy than its European counterparts and doubts Tsipras’s proposals for overhauling the pension system are sustainable, said the people, who requested anonymity because the meeting was private. (full article Bloomberg)
Alternate Labor Minister Tassos Petropoulos told Greek Parliament on Monday, that the higher income cap for those receiving more than one pension would be €3,088 gross per month (from 3,680 today).
However, Greek media report also about other cuts like for all pensions over €1,200.
KTG understands that the pension reform and the cuts are still subject of negotiations between Greece and the lenders, therefore… Let’s wait and see.
The point is that no matter what’s the IMF’s approach, many pensioners help their children and their families to come through in times of unemployment at 25% and ridiculously low monthly wages or part-time jobs. But these are small print letters for the IMF.