“Intense efforts by the government and the struggles and sacrifices of the people had as a result to put our fiscal issues in order, regain our credibility and win the necessary time allowing us to promote the major reforms the country needs,” government spokesman Giorgos Petalotis stressed on Monday.

He pointed out that “we have entered the phase of the materialization of the major structural reforms that will change for ever the country’s picture and the people’s daily lives”, adding that the reforms were “incorporated into the government’s programme without any outside being pressured by outside factors.”

Petalotis stated it is premature for the government to take a stance as regards the “competitiveness pact” package of measures because they are still being processed at least until the next Summit meeting in March unless an extraordinary summit is held in the meantime.

Responding to a relevant question, he ruled out the possibility of private sector employees losing their 13th and 14th salaries (half-salary Easter and summer vacation bonuses and full-salary Christmas bonus).

Asked if the government has processed a proposal to constitutionally guarantee fiscal balance, Petalotis said that it is too soon, considering that the EU Summit meeting ended last Friday.

Referring to the premier’s intention to visit Egypt, Petalotis said EU partners were notified about the prime minister’s visit and stressed that his trip was postponed and not cancelled. The exact time of his visit will be decided depending on the developments, he pointed out.