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article imageGreece to announce additional €11.5 billion in austerity cuts

By Katerina Nikolas     Jul 16, 2012 in World
Athens - The Greek government is set to announce a further €11.5 billion in cuts this week, in order to placate the Troika of creditors due in Athens on July 24.
The government is rushing to put together a further package of cuts worth €11.5 billion, to present for the approval of Greece's creditors. As Hellenic Shipping News reported the savings plan was scheduled to have been presented before the end of June, but was delayed by the more pressing business of national elections.
According to Athens News Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras will submit a proposal of cuts to Brussels by Friday to be considered by the EU, ECB and IMF. The proposals will be finalized on Wednesday during a meeting of the three party leaders, Antonis Samaras, Evangelos Venizelos and Fotis Kouvelis, who head up Greece's coalition government.
Cuts are expected to be made in pensions, social benefits and the public sector. Some of the ideas the coalition have tabled include an extension in mandatory military service from nine to 12 months, to reduce the cost of professional soldiers, and a move towards the church paying half the salaries of the clergy, currently borne in full by the state.
Since the June 17 election Antonis Samaras has already broken his election promise that the emergency property tax, first introduced hastily in 2011 and applied to electricity bills, would no longer be tagged onto electric bills. New bills are now being prepared, although there are plans to seize assets from those unable to pay the tax, rather than turn off their electrictiy supply. Greece's creditors insisted the government continue to apply the tax.
More about 115 billion euro cuts, Areopoli, troika, Yannis Stournaras, pension cuts
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