Staikouras: Greek gov’t support measures to reach 15 billion euros this year

The Greek government’s package of support measures will reach 15 billion euros this year, double from initial estimates of 7.5 billion, raising the value of the two-year support packages to 39 billion euros, Finance Minister Christos Staikouras said on Monday.

In comments made to ERT1 state television, Staikouras outlined the framework of short-term policies designed to support the restart of the economy, such as: the “Gefyra II” programme subsidising bank loans for individuals and enterprises, subsidising fixed overheads of enterprises with 500 million euros in the first programme and another 500 million in the second programme. Offering state loans worth more than 1.0 billion euros to enterprises. Staikouras said that around 53,800 enterprises in the food service sector will receive 167 million euros. Other support measures included financial support through EU funds, social tourism, suspension of tax and social insurance payment.

The Greek finance minister said he was “realistically optimistic” that the institutions’ assessment of the 10th report on the Greek economy will be positive, paving the way for the disbursement of around 700 million euros to Greece. He said that both the fiscal deficit and the public debt will be higher this year due to lower revenue and higher spending on support measures but that after 2022 there will be fiscal balance as economic growth will gather pace. He noted that the country’s public debt was sustainable since 2012, with very low servicing costs.