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Greek voters to decide their country's fate

greekbankThe European Commission has offered Greek voters a 10-point bailout plan and has urged them to vote to remain in the euro zone in a referendum to be held on July 5th.

Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announced on Friday that he would go to the people as Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker works on finalising the ten-point plan before a press conference to be held on Monday.

Juncker’s list of austerity measures was neither finished nor presented to the Eurogroup’s area finance ministers because of a “unilateral decision of the Greek authorities to abandon the process.”

The ten-point plan has been endorsed by the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

The IMF’s Christine Lagarde said “I shared my disappointment and underscored our commitment to continue to engage with the Greek authorities.”

Nearly half of Greece’s ATM cash machines ran out of money on Saturday and the government said today that the banks will remain closed on Monday for a week to prevent further widespread withdrawals. The Greek stock exchange also is closed until the referendum.Tourists are advised to take loads of cash when visiting Greece.

The new austerity package suggested for Greece involves higher and more taxes, especially VAT to 23% on most items and pension and labour market reforms. The plan deamnds that the Greek government “recognises that the pension system is unsustainable and needs fundamental reforms” and that pensions need to be cut.

Public wages, tax collection and corporate taxation are included in a plan that Greece's voters must accept if teh government wants any further money from the current bailout programme funders.

With cash leaving the banking system at unprecedented rates and the bailout end date of Jult 1st looming, Greece may have to impose capital controls as did Cyprus to the consternation of the business and international community.

The five year financial crisis looked likely to collapse the economy after Tsipras walked out of talks with Greece’s creditors last week and calling a referendum to ask his voters to decide on the aid package in return for liquidity.

Alexis Tsipras' move to hold a referendum has been criticised by his creditors as another delaying tactic when time has all but run out.

In Portugal the Left Bloc’s Catarina Martins said that the referendum in Greece "is the historic moment, an historic opportunity to end the dictatorship of the markets in Europe," and appealed to the left to be in solidarity with the Greek people.”

"We have seen over the years that European institutions and the financial markets have an aversion to democracy and, therefore, we understand the inconvenience this may be causing them," added Martins who praised Tsipras for deciding to let the people decide and suggesting this might be a good way forward for Spain, France (sic) and Portugal.

Antonis Samaras, leader of the New Democracy party this evening called for Tsipras to abandon the referendum plan, "Our country needs to remain at the heart of Europe and the euro. Mr. Tsipras should continue negotiations. If he does not get them done by himself, he should try and get a national consensus."

After announcing on television that deposits are safeguarded, Tsipras posted on Twitter adding that "the payment of salaries and pensions are also guaranteed," and that "In the coming days it will take patience and composure. The bank deposits of the Greek people are fully secure.”

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-1 #9 John Martin 2015-06-30 13:36
And remember Greece's Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis holds a dual Greece/Australian citizenship, do they care what really happens in Greece, their future is secured unlike the rest of Greece.
-1 #8 Malcolm H 2015-06-30 11:30
Yes - we keep hearing about the many tens of billions that were charged to Greece in its bail out rescues but never actually spent in 'rescuing' Greece. Used to pay off 'profligate' banks that were stupidly lending to Greece. Before the crash.

Yet, as with Portugal and its 200 billion euro (and daily increasing) debt, we hear nothing about where the original borrowings went. And why they cannot be tracked down offshore !

Let us get some balance here ! Hundreds of billions 'disappeared' or were 'frittered away' in Portugal as well !

Remind ourselves that something as simple as starting a tourism B & B is just as obstructed as before ! So explaining, as nothing has changed for the better here, why Portugal's borrowing rates are storming upwards. NOW.

Won't change - Can't change !
0 #7 Verjini 2015-06-30 10:17
Yes dw! You are sticking to the real facts.
Reading in the 'UK broad-sheet' press, it appears that 'less than 10% of the £170BN Greece received in 2010-12 was used for reforming its economy and safeguarding the weakest.'
+2 #6 SF 2015-06-29 10:07
[quote name="Rob Thompson"]
...it is best for Greece to sort ts problems outside the eurozone.

That is the only sentence from your comment worth taking note. What you don't seem to realise is that Greece is the starting point for bankers to take over entire European countries. Yes it has been done before but this is the first attempt in Europe. Don't think that the UK is immune to it as they have the best man representing these vultures/bankers in charge. Mr Cameron coming from a banking family himself has not been elected to represent the people, Mr Cameron is looking after his banking buddies.
+3 #5 dw 2015-06-29 09:38
The mainstream media coverage of this is little more than central banker's propaganda. A notable exception is Channel 4's Paul Mason: http://www.channel4.com/news/paul-mason

This is not about nation against nation, it's the rich elites stealing from society. Greece's own corrupt elite were bad enough, but Goldman Sachs's central bankers do things on a grander scale. Greece is first, but when they've looted the southern countries they'll be looking to do the same to Britain and Germany too.
+3 #4 Karel 2015-06-29 08:09
In fact a Grexit should be "a very good test" in order to measure Europe's entente, cohesion, goodwill, flexibility, strongness, political will and good common sense.
But let's hope the outcome would be far better than the poor results concerning the "boats drama" on their southern coasts.
-1 #3 Peter Booker 2015-06-29 07:30
I really like what Tsipras is reported to have said. If salaries, pensions and deposits are secure, where is the problem? The answer is of course that they are not secure, which is why people are taking out the money they have on deposit. In order to defend his already untenable position, Tsipras has resorted to a straight political lie.
+7 #2 Jamey 2015-06-28 22:32
Speak to any north European who has tried to make good in Greece (or other Club Med countries like Cyprus) and their story is remarkably similar to thousands of us in Portugal.

Endless obstruction to get licenses and ridiculous over charging to get buildings built or altered.Making business plans totally inconceivable even when they have not been copied and handed to local competitors.

So why should developed countries reach into their pockets to help out these backward undeveloped EU countries ? They have never added anything to the economic mix, defeat the purpose of the EU and just drain good will.
+6 #1 Rob Thompson 2015-06-28 21:05
.....appealed to the left to be in solidarity with the Greek people

This is one of the more absurd absurdities of the EU. That it paid agitators to spout gibberish at a minimum of 1000,000 thousand euros a year across the EU over the last 30 years. As though 'representing 'left' or 'right' when, in these undeveloped societies both were identical. And this woman is just one of hundreds in the Portuguese Parliament.

Greece like Portugal and these other Club Med countries never understood economic development, best practice, Competitiveness.

So should be left to rot. Like Cameron said - it is best for Greece to sort ts problems outside the eurozone (ie with its own currency or the US dollar then - if it still feels any need, rejoin)

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