The Greek Government passed a new bill on Wednesday, August 6, establishing a new series of economic reforms – as requested by the Troika – in order to receive the next bailout installment of 1 billion euros. During the summer parliamentary session, 50 Greek MPs voted in favor of the bill and 47 voted against.
The 1-billion-euro bailout installment is destined for the payment of Greek bondholders, ahead of the troika progress review to be conducted in September.
Several members of Greek armed forces protested against the bill on Wednesday morning.
“Don’t rob our pension funds!” they wrote on banners as they marched outside the Greek parliament protesting against the merge of public sector pension funds, which was part of the bill.
During the parliamentary debate for the bill, Greek Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis acknowledged the errors in tax property statements and stressed that authorities were currently working on correcting them. Furthermore, he stated that the government is “aiming to create a development plan which will include an external demand-based economy, as opposed to the internal consumption-based economy that currently exists in Greece.”
“The way to deal with long-standing economic stagnation is not only through the strengthening of domestic demand, especially when public debt is really high,” Hardouvelis noted.
“The main tool to curb recessionary pressures is not policies aimed at boosting consumption; it is structural reforms and public investments,” added the Greek Finance Minister.