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Sunday, 8 December 2013

Greece: Essential Listening, Light at the End of the Tunnel?


This BBC radio programme really held my attention between 3.30 and 4.00am this morning. The best thing I have heard (or read) on this subject for a long time, with some honest and objective views expressed:

BBC World Service, In the Balance, Greece, Light at The End of the Tunnel?

There is still evidence of unjustified optimism in some areas, of the government's inadequate emphasis on the pace or extent of structural reform in the Greek economy, given the number of "open issues" with the Troika and lenders. Not quite enough emphasis on the consequences of a lack of an adequate land registry, which has had a serious impact on the privatisation process. Some discussion of the lack of political will to tackle bureaucracy and to make deep structural reforms (apart from some significant  fiscal reforms).

Programme Information:

"After two years of draconian austerity measures, the Greek economy is finally showing signs of recovery. The stock market's done well this year and the government is balancing the books. Now the country needs growth, but where's that going to come from? And if you're running a business in Greece, does it actually feel as though the economy's on the mend? Ed Butler and his guests, Simos Anastasopoulos, President of the American Hellenic Chamber of Commerce; Panos Xenokostas, President and CEO of ONEX; and Peter Spiegel, Brussels Bureau Chief of the Financial Times, discuss the extent of Greece's upturn and what's needed to sustain it".

Other related news (Kathimerini)

Greek article

MPs' vote on the 2014 budget

MacroPolis report

The Greek Budget for 2014 (pdf. in Greek)

Observing Greece

Debt issues

The return of the Troika

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