EU Regional Policy Commissioner Johannes Hahn emphasised here on Monday that "our aim is to give a boost to Greece and a prospect to Greeks, through the promotion of direct and high-quality investments."
Speaking to reporters after a meeting with representatives of ministries managing Community funds, the Commissioner said:
“There’s not a moment to lose and Greece does not have the luxury to lose any subsidy funds,” he said, adding that the Commission was seeking to cooperate with the Greek government in overcoming chronic procedures.
Hahn said that “everyone’s nerves are tense” and said that scenarios of a Greek debt default are the result of an extreme situation prevailing in the country, while he noted that the EU would insist on a policy agreed to with Greek authorities.
He noted that Germany has decided to contribute in a fundamental way, not only with money transfers but with a substantial involvement of German entrepreneurs.
A German delegation will visit Greece every week to examine investment opportunities, while vice-chancellor Philipp Roesler will visit Athens next month, in a good will gesture.
The EU Commission will visit Athens next week to attend a special seminal on lifting bureaucracy and agreeing on the priorities for every region of the country. Hahn said that Brussels has earmarked additional 500 million euros to support small- and medium-sized enterprises. He noted that the Commission was responding to an urgent call by Greece to raise EU funding up to 95 pct - for a period of time - to facilitate absorption of EU funds by Greece.
Speaking to reporters, Development, Competitiveness & Shipping Minister Mihalis Chryssohoidis said the country “was living in war tense trends but there was a strong will to reach a new model in order to avoid being left on the sidelines of history”.