Government’s talks with institution missions in Athens ‘went very well,’ Greek official says

Government officials and the heads of the institutions’ missions in Athens have concluded a round of meetings to review the Greek economy as part of the country’s post-programme surveillance, a government official said on Friday, reporting that the talks “went very well.” He said he was optimistic that there will be a decision to disburse ANFAs and SNPs, the profits from Greek bonds held by the European Central Bank and European national banks.

“It is a completely different framework, with different views but without confrontations,” the official said, adding that the percentage increase of the minimum wage is the province of the government.

During Friday’s review, according to the same source, the most important issue was the framework that will replace the “Katseli law” for the protection indebted home owners.

“We had some good discussions, both yesterday and the day before, since this is the aim and the issue at stake. There are some other details that need work. These issues always require work by the government. We are on a good track,” the official noted.

The two sides also discussed the possible danger posed by certain court decisions, but the source noted that this was not something that caused concern for the next three months or even two years.

“Will will look at how to deal with them in a cooperative fashion, when and if these things materialise. They will be treated differently if they are one-off (return of back pay) or permanent measures (such as restoring benefits) and whether the sum is large or small,” the official explained. The institutions, the source added, were also aware that this was something external to the government, for which it was not responsible, and not a result of government policy.

The official said the talks had also touched on the government’s plan for reducing non-performing loans held by Greek banks, even though this was not part of the second review, expressing hope that it might be possible to announce more details in the coming weeks.

“When the plan is ready we will go to DG Comp [at the European Commission]. We are discussing it because we want their ideas and opinions,” the official said.

Source ANA-MPA
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