The course of the Greek economy was at the center of intense controversy in Parliament, between the Minister of Finance Christos Staikouras and the former Minister of Finance Euclides Tsakalotos and the competent head of SYRIZA Efi Ahtsioglou, on the occasion of the discussion of the draft law. Scaramanga and the creation of Casino in Elliniko.
The bill was accepted by a majority, with ND and KINAL voting in favor of its principle, while all the rest of the Opposition voted against it.
Another point of verbal confrontation between them was the securing of the jobs of the current employees in the Scaramanga Shipyards, with the Minister of Finance, but also the Minister of Development ‘Adonis Georgiadis, to categorically reject the accusations of the SYRIZA executives that “the government chose to all the requirements of the individual legislating their dismissal “.
Both Mr. Staikouras and Mr. Georgiadis spoke of hypocrisy and crocodile tears in SYRIZA, blaming all the responsibility on his government as, as they claimed, in 2018 he put the Shipyards under special management without providing anything for the employees.
The Minister of Finance, defended his bill, emphasizing that, “his ultimate goal is tax cuts, the implementation of emblematic investments and tackling chronic problems created by the responsibility of all previous governments.”
“With the bill, we are making an emblematic investment in Elliniko and we are giving the opportunity for a more substantial investment in the Skaramaga shipyards,” he said.
“We are utilizing the fiscal space created this year, so these 250 million found are from exceeding the targets to help Greek society. This is a rationally credible solution that we will see if you vote for it,” said Mr. Staikouras. addressed to the Opposition.
At this point, he emphasized the four legislative interventions by providing incentives to Greeks abroad to return to Greece, stressing that “the results are extremely encouraging.”
As he said, in the two and a half years of implementation of the institutional framework, 75 investments have been approved, which exceed 50 million euros, while another 27 applications for new investments are being processed.
“This result is proof that the tax system is an important tool for public revenues, so we have to go with a plan, vision and confidence. So we strengthen the incentive process, to attract even more investors,” he said. Staikouras.
He then referred to the provision for the development of Elliniko and the creation of a Casino, emphasizing that the area acquires a strong investment form.
“Today’s agreement brought by the ND government for Elliniko is fully in line with the concession agreement signed, and rightly so, by the SYRIZA government,” said Mr. Staikouras, rejecting allegations of unilateral safeguarding of investors’ interests, opposing that these arguments are illogical “.
However, Mr. Staikouras was particularly critical of SYRIZA’s attitude towards the regulation for the Scaramanga Shipyards, pointing out that, while its executives were lazy in their criticism of the bill, accusing the government of strange transactions, they skipped the fact that the Scientific Council of the Parliament makes no reference to the provision.
“Let me remind you that the special management status of Skaramaga Shipyards entered in 2018, under the SYRIZA government, and was a consequence of their mismanagement for many years. Their licensing framework has existed since 2018. European Court of Justice € 700 million for illegal state aid.
We have continuity of the state. What we implemented was what emerged from the institutional framework we found. “We succeeded and made a tender process completely transparent and successful”, the Minister of Finance pointed out.
Referring to the issue of job security, which was raised by the Opposition as a whole, Mr. Staikouras said characteristically:
“Of course we do everything to secure the jobs of current employees in the future and to be paid compensation and debts for their earnings. We do what is possible, right and realistic to make another investment. The difference “Our goal is that we solve problems created by all governments and do not hide them under the rug. We continue the path of reforms by consistently legislating, away from the crocodile tears of SYRIZA because we are the party of responsibility.”
The reaction of the Minister of Finance was intense, to the accusations “for mockery and for financial bleeding of 3.8 billion of the Greek citizens by the government of ND”, both of the former Minister of Finance, Euclides Tsakalotos and of the competent head of SYRIZA, Efi Achtsiog .
“Inflation is breaking one record after another. Citizens are suffocating and crushed by the inconceivable cost of living and the Minister of Finance in the face of this situation says that he gave a lot of money. “Citizens’ bills not only did not decrease but come 4 and five times higher”, said Ms. Ahtsioglou.
“Ms. Ahtsioglou, with the well-known risk-taking and adventurism of SYRIZA executives, referred to the course of the economy.
“Is it true or not that Greece has the highest growth rate among European countries with 7% in the first quarter of 2022? That unemployment has decreased significantly in the last three years? That the minimum wage has increased significantly by over 11.5% and Greece is in the 9th place of the highest minimum wages in the EU? Is it true or not that at the end of 2021 the disposable income was increased? That we supported the Greek companies and the Greek society with a series of interventions? That the citizens pay less taxes than “That 68% of taxpayers will not pay taxes this year, while 14% will have credit? Is it true or not that Greece is the second country with a reduction in the tax burden on households and businesses?”
“Tax revenues have risen because the economy is doing better. The Opposition’s fear of padlocks and unemployment has not been confirmed to date. But it is a fact that we have a new external crisis that blurs the good image of the economy and we come to help Greek society with The most courageous and balancing measures, amounting to 8.5 billion euros, which according to the data are a lot of money, Greece gives much more resources than European countries to help its citizens. Interventions or society? Is subsidizing electricity and gas a boost to profiteering? No. It is realism and proof that the government is close to every citizen and business, so the correctness of targeted measures to strengthen society through the state budget , is the answer “, he pointed out and added:
“We use the fiscal space with prudence and responsibility and the citizens recognize it and turn their backs on the past, recognizing that they do not want to go back to the nationally and politically irresponsible policy of 2015, with delusions and illusions. With prudence and modesty we create the “Prospects for progress and development of the economy. SYRIZA only seeks impressions”.
Finally, Mr. Staikouras rejected the SYRIZA amendment on “where are the politicians?” , effective control and enhancement of transparency “.
Former Minister of Finance Euclid Tsakalotos, in his intervention, accused Mr. Staikouras that “he chooses an ironic and pastoral style to face the Opposition, without answering the essential and critical questions that he asks”.
“The whole Opposition is tired of this ironic irrational style of the Finance Minister who does not answer any questions. But there is the indignation of the people. Answer why the agreement changed after the tender and the regime became more favorable for the private investor?” .
“You do not get a degree of credibility by not giving answers to what we ask you, but you say what you have already prepared. This does not honor the SW. When people feel the accuracy and have to make cuts everywhere and do not go on holiday, “Minister that there are no problems and everything is going well. But the distance from reality will be answered very quickly by the Greek people”, concluded Mr. Tsakalotos.
The reaction of the Minister of Finance was immediate.
“In contrast to your term, which as Minister of Finance you did not come to the parliament to answer, we answer in essence. There is economic continuity in the country, based on EU rules and the data you have signed. You did not understand the “Based on what you have signed, the employees can not stay and the fines cannot be written off. This is what you have signed. The employees’ contracts expire and then the investor will take whoever he wants and we wish to take them all”, Staikouras and concluded:
“I answered in detail, SYRIZA does not want to understand. But we will continue our work with straightforwardness and completeness.”
The Minister of Development and Investment, Adonis Georgiadis, also intervened in the matter, attributing to SYRIZA “hypocrisy and crocodile tears for the employees”.
“When I took over as Minister of Development, in the first meeting I had with the liquidator, appointed by SYRIZA, he explained to me that the agreement made by the previous government for the workers was inviolable. SYRIZA welcomed the agreement for the Scaramanga Shipyards because otherwise it would But you are coming today and you are pretending, criticizing in an unfamiliar way what you in SYRIZA have signed. Do not make fun of the employees. A successful contest. And now you are shedding crocodile tears. You are liars and hypocrites. Stop lying in a process you started and do not make fun of people. “Aren’t you ashamed? Is your hypocrisy enough”, Mr. Georgiadis emphasized characteristically .
Addressing Mr. Tsakalotos personally, Mr. Georgiadis stated that, “it cannot, when all the rating agencies say that the Greek economy is doing well, zero the investment record of 2021 – which is a record of the last 30 years and 2022 is expected to be a record of all times – and when during his tenure, Greece was 10th in the ranking, among European countries “.