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A bon viveur named Joachim Fuchtel

Hans Joachim Fuchtel, the man charged to bring close links in local governance betwen Greece and Germany has irked the mayor of Thessaloniki who accuses him of being just a bon viveur.

Thessaloniki mayor Yannis Boutaris seems miffed with German deputy labor minister Joachim Fuchtel, saying that the only thing the latter is interested in, in Greece, is good food and good wine, and results are nil.

As mentioned in To Vima newspaper, the man delegated by chancellor Angela Merkel to further Greek-German cooperation in local governance believed the mayor of Thessaloniki was his best friend in Greece. However, Yannis Boutaris seems to be upset and is accusing Fuchtel of coming to Greece on culinary and wine excursions (known lover of retsina and octopus), learning a few words in Greek, but in reality doing nothing.

In a three page letter to the foreign ministries of Greece and Germany, Yannis Boutaris expresses his dissatisfaction and his worry for the inability to make the most of the positive, in its inception, notion of Greek-German collaboration.

He directly accuses Mr Fuchtel of organizing musical tours, wasting public money for hosting banquets for no reason, and also notes that Greek mayors have not assimilated the developmental knowhow for local governance reform that Fuchtel was bringing.