Economy Minister Stathakis: Α positive rate will be seen in the first half of 2016 and surely in the second quarter of 2016

The Greek economy is expected to contract by less than 2.0 pct, maybe even 1.5 pct, Economy Minister George Stathakis said in a radio interview.

Stathakis noted, however: “I dare not give the exact number, but we hinted two weeks ago that it would probably fall below 2.0 pct. Now, we can say for sure that it will reach this level. I think a positive rate will be seen in the first half of 2016 and surely in the second quarter of 2016”.

Commenting on the absorption of community funds and investments, the Greek minister noted: “Two days before we leave the government we signed a new loan with the European Investment Bank, worth 1.0 billion euros, aimed to cover funding gaps. We have received an advanced payment of 300 million euros and we expect to fully absorb 4.5 billion euros by the end of the year. This is the biggest boost to be offered at this point”.

Stathakis expressed his confidence that the first review of bailout program will be completed on time and successfully, since the country needed to complete the bank recapitalisation programme by the end of the year.