Financial News: Greek FinMin, troika continue round of talks

Greek Finance Minister George Papakonstantinou on Tuesday met with the heads of a troika delegation, as part of a regular inspection of the Greek economy.

Finance ministry officials said the inspections focused on accelerating structuring reforms and noted that the country has secured payment of the fourth tranche of an IMF/EU loan. They also stressed that troika officials did not think there was a problem with pledges undertaken by the country, or timetables of implementing measures while they also did not particularly worry over fiscal consolidation. Their aim was to sustain a momentum on reforms.

Ministry sources said the troika underlined uncertainties in spending of the wider central government, combating tax evasion and speeding up privatizations. The ministry officials reiterated that there was no issue of abolishing payment of the 13th and 14th wages in the private sector and dismissed talk of plans to further raise VAT rates.

The officials said the government would seek a dialogue with political parties, economists and unions over focused actions, worth 12.77 billion euros, or 5.2 pct of the country’s Gross Domestic Product, in the period 2012-2015, needed to save on spending and support growth. The aim is to have a primary budget surplus of 5.0 pct of GDP in 2015, the sources said.

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