Finance minister Evangelos Venizelos warned on Sunday that the recent developments do not offer themselves for "imaginative danger-mongering scenarios and the creation of fleeting impressions", in a statement prompted by the "press-political scenarios that saw the light of day over the weekend on the discussions with the troika".
Venizelos reiterated that the European Commission (EC), European Central Bank (ECB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) troika's departure had been previously scheduled and agreed, and opened that full implementation of the July 21 EU summit agreements by mid-October can change the situation and de-escalate the pressure on the Greek economy.
He also sharply criticised "everyone investing politically in the emergence of problems", warning that they are "not contributing to the national effort to find solutions" and that they "have no sense of the danger nor a conscience of national responsibility".
Venizelos further said that the statements he made during his press conference on Friday, which has come under sharp attack by the opposition parties, had been in the knowledge of the Greek government's institutional interlocutors (troika), stressing that "it is said that press-political scenarios that aim at cultivating a climate of insecurity and danger-mongering are persistently being recycled, without it being realised that this is particularly harmful for the Greek economy and the hurt self-respect of the Greek people".
The finance minister called on the Greek citizens to focus their attention on the points of substance of the presentation he made on Friday.
"The government is discussing with the troika the macro-economic framework and fiscal targets for 2011 and 2012. Both we, and our partners, realise what the situation is, what the needs are and what the priorities of the Greek economy are in order that it may permanently exit the crisis," the statement said.
"Is there anyone in our country who does not want measures for halting the recession to be taken, and instead measures to increase the recession? I hope not. Is there anyone in our country that does not want us to move dynamically in the direction of the required radical structural changes that enhance our national competitiveness and allow us to escape the vicious circle of the crisis? I hope not," Venizelos continued.
"The government is simultaneously dealing with the issues concerning the implementation of the July 21 Summit decisions, matters that are vital for Greece but also for the eurozone itself, he said.»These include: Activation of the new role of the EFSF (European Fiscal Stability Facility) that must be approved by the parliaments of the member states in the coming weeks; Resolution of the matter of the guarantees sought by Finland, in the framework that is explicitly set out in the July 21 decision and which Greece held a bilaterally discussed with Finland before the matter was introduced to the Eurogroup at the level of ministers' representatives, where it is being discussed; and completion of the PSI, in other words ensurance of the largest possible percentage of participation of the international banking system in the plan to extend and improve the terms of the Greek debt," he elaborated.
Venizelos said that all these issues mutually influence each other, with the common denominator being Greece's obligation to meet its commitments to its partners, "in other words our doing everything that must be done for the reconstruction of the country, not because it is imposed on us from the outside, but because all that we did not do for years we must now do voluntarily, in a short space of time, for the sake of our children".
He stressed that the full implementation of the July 21 decisions by mid-October could change the situation and de-escalate the pressure on the Greek real economy.
In that context, Venizelos reiterated that:
1) The departure of the troika officials on Friday, in order to return in 10 days, had been agreed and planned from the outset, "as a working method that will enable us to have a fuller picture not only with respect to the execution of the 2011 budget but also on the draft for the 2012 budget".
2) The deeper recession (than initially predicted) is a reality that automatically impacts the fiscal goal. But irrespective of the recession, there are the measures that have already been passed and are in effect that need to be implemented, and many structural matters "on which we, as a country, are bound to show better results, in a faster and more decisive way, and that is what we are doing".
Venizelos warned that whoever believes that all these matters may be dealt with as political issues of an old, conventional type, or whoever believes that the offer themselves for imaginative danger-mongering scenarios and the creation of fleeting impressions "is outside the realm of reality", and whoever invests political in the expectation of problems arising and does not contribute to the national effort to find solutions "has neither the sense of the danger nor a conscience of national responsibility".