Log in
A+ A A-

Greek central bank monetary policy report submitted to Parliament president

Bank of Greece governor Yannis Stournaras on Wednesday presented the central bank's annual monetary policy report for 2015-2016 to Parliament President Nikos Voutsis, once again urging privatisations and reforms to increase the intensity of competition.

In the report, the central bank called for a reduction of primary surplus targets from 3.5 pct of GDP to 2 pct of GDP, combined with a debt restructuring "that will not impose losses on the creditors but will be a situation where both the borrower, in other words Greece, and the lenders stand to gain."
The central banker also invited the government to work with the BoG to address the issue of non-performing loans and commercial banks, noting that this was "a great problem but also a great opportunity."
"We hope that with the help of the BoG ...we will quickly find good solutions supporting the socially weakest," Voutsis said, receiving the report. The Parliament president also raised the issue of ending capital controls and creating a road map for achieving this as quickly as possible.
"With the economic team, we must find which factors create growth now and what are the obstacles to growth," Stournaras replied, noting that there were still dangers ahead of Greece, including the refugee crisis, a possible 'Brexit' and the course of taxation in Greece.
"We have to see how we can offset the recessionary repercussions of these dangers, if they transpire," he said, adding that the BoG was at the disposal of the Parliament and government to discuss and take measures.
According to Voutsis, Europe as a whole was facing problems and issues - such as the secret deliberations on the TTIP and CETA agreements - "that create a framework of danger and risk for the European acquis, not just on the level of the economy." These came to be added to the problems already caused by the austerity policies imposed on Greece, he added, noting that the country "must exit this noose very quickly, with the help of all."
On his part, Stournaras noted that Greece must be ready with counter-proposals to measures it does not like and for this reason the Greek central bank had for some time proposed smaller primary surpluses and a debt restructuring that would benefit "the architecture of the Eurozone, not just Greece." He also agreed with Voutsis and noted that things were now being discussed that "we didn't even think" 18 months ago, while describing cooperation between the government and central bank as "flawless".