PM Tsipras: Amendment on terms for the restoration of Mati extremely important
“One of the amendments we are called to vote on today concerns a very important intervention, which outlines the terms for restoring the damage in Mati,” stated Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras while addressing parliament on Wednesday.
He said that he visited the fire-stricken area of Mati on Tuesday and talked with local residents. “Every day the people in Mati fight a battle to heal their wounds and, despite the huge bureaucratic difficulties we face, we have managed to stand, to a great extent, by their side,” said Tsipras.
He then outlined the actions taken to date, such as the inspections and classification of buildings, the financial support measures for the victims, the demolitions of condemned buildings and the logging to remove burnt trees.
Tsipras said that the amendment allows, among others, the possibility to proceed with the issue of building permits and a complete rebuilding of the condemned structures on terms that will not repeat the mistakes of the past.
He publicly thanked Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, who informed Tsipras in a letter that his proposal that Cyprus contribute to the construction of a public hospital in the stricken areas has been approved.
“We are already moving rapidly with the implementation of a plan that has guided us safely out of the memoranda and to a safe fiscal margin by meeting the targets of the programme” Tsipras said to the parliament.
“Today we are tabling an amendment on the social dividend. This is the third successive year that we have the ability to give to those that are weaker,” Tsipras said, noting that the amount was roughly equivalent to that handed out the previous year.
The prime minister said that the amount is initially set at 710 mln euros but that this may even increase, depending on the adjustments made. He said that the exact amount and the criteria will be determined on Monday, through a Joint Ministerial Decision, so that the relevant platform for applications can open on Tuesday. He explained that, based on estimates, the measures are expected to assist 1.3-1.4 million households, or approximately 3.5 million beneficiaries.
On the amendment for the reduction of the Real Estate Property Tax (ENFIA) he said that with the proposed amendment the citizens with small-scale and medium property holdings will see a substantial decline in their tax burden in the next year.
He said that the total tax reduction for the working classes will reach 50 percent in 2020 after an additional weighted average reduction that will exceed 20 pct that is planned and for which the fiscal space has been secured, meaning that there already provision for it in the medium-term programme for 2020.
Explaining why the government has not also tabled a provision for ENFIA in 2020, Tsipras said that the government is implementing what was promised to the Greek people. He added that the government had spoken of 700 million euro measures in 2019 but the fiscal space actually created came to 900 million euros.
“The country will continue to emerge from the crisis with safety, with a plan and lots of work, the economy will recover and society will breathe,” he underlined.
“All this, however, depends on Greece not going back,” he added. “That it does not go back to widespread corruption, the wasting of public money, and the period of deficits and non-transparent management of public finances, back to the neoliberal views imposed by the IMF that Mitsotakis now voluntarily promises to implement if he is elected.”