Saturday, July 13, 2024

Greek PM outlines govt goals ahead of confidence vote

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis presented his government’s goals up to 2027 during a debate in Parliament ahead of a vote of confidence scheduled for Saturday.

The conservative leader, who was re-elected in last month’s general elections, pledged to boost wages both in the private and public sectors, increase pensions by at least 3 per cent starting next year, cut taxes and social security contributions, and carry out reforms to improve the functioning of the state, reports Xinhua news agency.

The package also includes more benefits for families with children, youth, and the most vulnerable to help them to cope with the continuing inflationary pressure, as well as reforms in the healthcare, education and justice systems, with an emphasis on social coherence, the green economy, and digital transformation.

“I firmly believe that the better days are ahead of us,” Mitsotakis was quoted by Greek national broadcaster ERT.

He added that a lot needs to be done to address chronic shortcomings highlighted by the Greek debt crisis (2009-2018) and new challenges.

Staying on the course of strong economic growth is a prerequisite to making all the necessary changes and achieving the new goals, he said.

After about 13 years in the so-called “junk status”, achieving investment-grade status by the end of 2023 is one of the government’s economic priorities, Mitsotakis said.

Another target is to bring forward the repayment of the outstanding debt from an earlier bailout loan, which would signal to markets that Greece is moving forward fast.

Moreover, the government aims to reduce the country’s public debt to 140 per cent, and increase exports to 60 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP), and bring the unemployment rate down to 8 per cent by 2027, according to Mitsotakis.

In the election held on June 25, the Prime Minister’s New Democracy party garnered 40.55 per cent of the ballots, securing 158 seats in the next 300-member Parliament to form a single-party government.

In the 2019 general elections, the party had won 39.8 per cent of the votes with 158 seats in Parliament.



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