Germany blocks €15 billion Greek loan installment over islands VAT cut

Α Decrease font Enlarge font
Germany blocks €15 billion Greek loan installment over islands VAT cutESM approves in principle the disbursement of last loans to Greece

Prime Minister and Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras’ decision to give five Greeks islands overloaded with refugees and migrants an exemption from a Valued Added Tax (VAT) break without consulting the country’s creditors has led Germany to block release of a 15-billion euro ($17.44 billion) installment.

The money is the last from a staggered third bailout of 86 billion euros ($99.97 billion) he sought in the summer of 2015 after saying he wouldn’t because it came with more of the crushing measures he vowed to reject but agreed to implement.

That included an avalanche of tax hikes and new taxes, including raising the VAT on remote islands as well as the refugee-laden islands of Lesbos, Samos, Chios, Kos and Leros where some 15,000 are being held, with most seeking asylum after the European Union shut its borders to them.

Three rescue packages of 326 billion euros ($378.96 billion) end on Aug. 20, leaving Greece to the mercy of the markets and years of monitoring from the Troika of the European Union-European Central Bank-European Stability Mechanism (EU-ECB-ESM).

The Troika put up the third bailout while the Washington, D.C.-based International Monetary Fund (IMF) took part in two first loans of 240 billion euros ($278.99 billion) but was replaced in the latest by the ESM.

A “clean exit” from the bailouts

The lenders disputed Tsipras’ claim there would be a “clean exit” from the bailouts and said they’ll step up scrutiny to make sure he doesn’t renege on reforms, as he did in giving the refugee islands a break without clearing it with them.

Greek banks are also losing access to cheap liquidity through the ECB’s waiver on Greek government bonds, while the country is losing the chance to participate in the ECB bond-buying program.

For the 15 billion euros to be unblocked before the bailouts end, Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos pledged the islands discount would expire at the end of the year although Tsipras earlier said it would stand as long as there’s a refugee and migrant crisis.

Tsakalotos told a meeting of the Eurogroup, an informal body where the ministers of the euro area member states discuss matters relating to their shared responsibilities related to the euro that Greece will make up the loss of 28 million euros ($32.55 million) in the VAT exemption some other way although he didn’t say how.

With elections required to be held by October, 2019 and plummeting in polls after reneging on anti-austerity pledges, Tsipras is trying to wiggle out of imposing more pension cuts next year he agreed to after saying it was a Red Line he wouldn’t step over but jumped over at orders of the lenders.

Eurogroup chief Mario Centeno and ESM Director Klaus Regling stressed there should be no change to what has already been agreed. “The next stage, the end of the program, is very important for the building of confidence in Greece, which must remain loyal to the pledges made in the course of the program,” Centeno said.

Read more at thenationalherald.com

RELATED TOPICS: GreeceGreek tourism newsTourism in GreeceGreek islandsHotels in GreeceTravel to GreeceGreek destinations Greek travel marketGreek tourism statisticsGreek tourism report

 

Tornos
  1. 19/09 23:33

    Trivago business report: The top Hotel amenities to attract every type of traveler

  2. 19/09 23:27

    Enterprise Greece: Foreign investors have their eyes on tourism infrastructure

  3. 19/09 23:14

    Athens Animation Agora to take place this weekend at Onassis Foundation

  4. 19/09 23:06

    Athens University Medical School in top 150 NTU global rankings

  5. 19/09 22:57

    Greek and Qatari foreign ministers agree to enhance bilateral cooperation

  6. 19/09 22:49

    Condé Nast International to launch Vogue Greece edition

  7. 19/09 20:31

    ‘Polyxeni’ film submitted for the Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

  8. 19/09 20:01

    New York University plants roots in Greece with Athens Center

  9. 19/09 19:25

    First private High School specializing on maritime education on Greek island of Hios

  10. 19/09 18:17

    WindEurope: Greek wind power to achieve a 50% surge by 2022

  11. 19/09 18:11

    Trezoros: The Lost Jews of Kastoria to air on September 26 on WNET Channel 13

  12. 19/09 17:10

    Piraeus port council approves energy program for street lighting

  13. 19/09 16:20

    English rock band The Cure to perform in Greece after 14 years (video)

  14. 19/09 15:55

    TRAINOSE aims to make the railway top choice for Athens-Thessaloniki transport

  15. 19/09 14:45

    Greek-American Pulitzer Prize winning author Jeffrey Eugenides to visit Greece

  16. 19/09 13:43

    Attica Region launches new and improved website for visitors of Athens

  17. 19/09 12:34

    Real estate report: Abandonded shack on Greek island of Skopelos sold for € 1 million

  18. 19/09 10:24

    Subsidies for unleaded petrol and diesel on Greek islands to start in October

  19. 18/09 23:08

    Deadline to register income and properties from 'Airbnb' style rentals in Greece

  20. 18/09 22:58

    Nammos beach bar on Greek island of Mykonos expands to Dubai

  21. 18/09 22:48

    Hollywood star Matthew McConaughey says “Greece is Paradise” (video)

  22. 18/09 22:18

    Turkish Airlines marks 85th anniversary with new cabin crew uniform

  23. 18/09 22:11

    Impressive Russian frigate docks at Greek island of Poros (video)

  24. 18/09 21:52

    8,9% more Cypriot residents travelled abroad this August

  25. 18/09 21:31

    Record tourist arrivals in Cyprus during August 2018

  26. 18/09 21:04

    8 top reasons to add Greek yogurt to your daily diet

  27. 18/09 20:46

    First underwater gallery on "Big Blue" Amorgos island

  28. 18/09 18:38

    Eros Ramazzotti show in Athens Riviera on September 27

  29. 18/09 17:50

    Traditional Boat Regatta on Greek island of Chios enchants spectators (video)

  30. 18/09 16:02

    Federation of Business Information Service AGM and conference in Athens

  31. 18/09 15:21

    Standard & Poor’s raises again Cyprus into Investment Grade

  32. 18/09 15:16

    Homage to renowned Greek artist Halepas in Athens until October 13

  33. 18/09 13:07

    Greek Deputy Foreign Minister meets with Canadian ambassador Dion

  34. 18/09 12:56

    Leonard Cohen tribute at Athens Concert Hall on September 21

  35. 18/09 11:47

    Greece and Russia celebrate 190 years of diplomatic ties

  36. 18/09 10:18

    "Face Forward" interactive art project on Crete island until October 14

  37. 17/09 23:04

    Greek Tourism Minister meets South Korean counterpart

  38. 17/09 22:54

    Egnatia motorway, Alexandroupolis and Kavala ports on Greek privatization agency's priority list

  39. 17/09 22:50

    Thessaloniki International Fair attracted around 284,000 visitors in September 8-16

  40. 17/09 22:34

    Fourni becomes the first independent energy community on the Greek islands

  41. 17/09 22:27

    Minoan Lines inaugurates new sea route from Souda in Crete to Piraeus Port

  42. 17/09 22:07

    Hospitalitynet report: How can Artificial Intelligence boost hotel experience

  43. 17/09 20:51

    ‘Let’s Go Greek’ festival amazes Sydney

  44. 17/09 20:16

    Greece to re-examine safety in seven famous beaches of Ionian Sea

  45. 17/09 19:46

    €95 million upgrade of Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport to commence this week

  46. 17/09 16:41

    Grivalia Properties purchases 49% stake in Piraeus Port Plaza 2

  47. 17/09 15:15

    €1.11 billion offered for 20-year extension of Athens Airport concession agreement

  48. 17/09 15:07

    Short Film Festival in northern Greek city of Drama

  49. 17/09 14:02

    NYSPCC 2018 Food and Wine gala on November 6

  50. 17/09 13:48

    Greek President inaugurates 6th annual "Athens Democracy Forum"

  51. 17/09 13:15

    Bronze age structures revealed by excavations at Erimi-Laonin of Porakos in Cyprus

  52. 17/09 12:01

    Wellness Tourism report: Greek bliss on your yoga mat

  53. 17/09 10:28

    Tranio: Greece offers the cheapest Golden Visa program with €250,000 only

  54. 16/09 20:42

    Trump imposes tariffs on about $200 billion more in Chinese products

  55. 16/09 16:25

    Lee Ranaldo free concert in Athens Niarxos Cultural Center on September 18

  56. 16/09 14:01

    Greece to host European Sea Scouting Seminar Eurosea in 2020

  57. 16/09 13:57

    Greek railways to upgrade its services and train stations

  58. 16/09 13:50

    Agios Emilianos in Peloponnese Riviera offers stunning resorts and villas (video)

  59. 16/09 13:46

    International interest in Athens Elliniko casino permit grows

  60. 16/09 13:39

    Athens-Washington discuss new U.S. Army base on Greek island of Karpathos

  61. 16/09 13:32

    Greek Main Opposition leader at TIF again requests Diaspora vote (video)

  62. 16/09 12:27

    Greek Finance Minister: New relaxation on capital controls very soon

  63. 16/09 11:45

    Greek Piraeus Port Authority signs third MoU with Chinese port Guangzhou

  64. 16/09 10:22

    Greek-American managers at 83rd TIF: Greece needs a stable taxation system

  65. 16/09 09:43

    Goran Bregovic to perform live in Larissa city of Thessaly on Sunday

  66. 15/09 20:17

    Isabella Rossellini show at Athens Concert Hall on October 20

  67. 15/09 18:04

    Sani Resort in Chalkidiki replaces all plastic straws with biodegradable ones

  68. 15/09 17:58

    Discover the largest swimming pools in the world

  69. 15/09 13:51

    Etihad extends content, merchandising and mobile deals with Travelport

  70. 15/09 12:47

    The 4th Gastronomy Festival in Kardamena of Kos island (video)

  71. 15/09 11:35

    "Wheel of Fortune" beauty Julia Nova makes splash in Mykonos beach (video)

  72. 15/09 10:24

    Pafos site in ‘World Heritage Journeys’ sustainable travel web platform

  73. 14/09 21:36

    Inside the Forbidden City in Athens between September 15 - February 14

  74. 14/09 21:29

    The Guardian praises Athens as tourist destination

  75. 14/09 21:22

    Russian tycoon begins €184 million development on former Onassis island

  76. 14/09 21:15

    Burger Fest in Athens between September 14-16

  77. 14/09 20:10

    Museum and archaeological site visits up in Greece during May

  78. 14/09 19:01

    Turkey’s Constitutional Court rejects conversion of Hagia Sophia to Mosque

  79. 14/09 18:44

    New Greek chef cookbook with 100 updated recipes

  80. 14/09 17:56

    Athens Philharmonia Orchestra performance at Benaki Museum on September 16

  81. 14/09 15:51

    Zakynthos officials close Navagio Beach to bathers and boats (video)

  82. 14/09 15:44

    Passenger traffic at Greek airports in January-August 2018 soar by 9.9%

  83. 14/09 15:39

    Privatization agency extends Athens International Airport concession for 20 years

  84. 14/09 14:05

    Greek investors to construct ship-building plant in Niger-Delta of Africa

  85. 14/09 13:46

    Road Tourism report: 13 tips on how to drive safely in Greece

  86. 14/09 12:00

    "Philotimo" scholarship competition for Greek-American students (video)

  87. 14/09 10:27

    Technical college of Crete to receive €1.2 million through EU regional funds

  88. 13/09 21:59

    Cyprus and Egypt aim at further promoting their relations in tourism

  89. 13/09 21:48

    Invest Cyprus to promote the filming industry in the island

  90. 13/09 21:40

    Europarliament discusses additional help to Greece on regional funds

  91. 13/09 21:32

    First prison sentence for fake reviews on TripAdvisor

  92. 13/09 21:26

    The 50th Thessaloniki International Fair Rally kicks off on Saturday

  93. 13/09 21:24

    Australian TV to host show about Greek islands of Serifos and Milos

  94. 13/09 21:09

    Athens International Airport expands to keep up with growing demand

  95. 13/09 21:01

    1st Family Olympics and Olympic Run on Sunday in Thessaloniki

  96. 13/09 20:17

    TripAdvisor: Athens Walking Tours among the top 10 cultural experiences in the world

  97. 13/09 19:09

    USS Mout Whitney an imposing sight off the Greek port of Thessaloniki

  98. 13/09 15:54

    Samaria gorge in Crete to close down on Friday after heavy rainfall

  99. 13/09 12:55

    3rd Athens Coffee Festival to open its gates on September 29

  100. 13/09 12:45

    US Secretary of Commerce: Greece offers opportunities for top tourism investment