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article imageOp-Ed: Majority of Greeks expect 2013 to be worse than 2012

By Katerina Nikolas     Jan 1, 2013 in World
As 2013 dawns a new poll shows the majority of Greeks expect this year to be worse than last, as tough new austerity measures and taxes take effect.
Having secured loans to recapitalize the Greek banks and repay state debt, Greek Prime Minister Anthonis Samaras is optimistic about the nations future in 2013. Ekathimerini reported In his New Year's message Samaras said "We said that we would avert Greeceā€™s exit from the euro. Few believed it but we succeeded."
Samaras added "In 2013, we will change Greek reality, with an emphasis on recovery and social cohesion." However, a New Year poll shows that 64 percent of Greeks believe 2013 than will be worse than other years.
According to To Vima 2013 will begin with rising unemployment, a further decline in consumer spending, inflation, lower wages and pensions, and increased taxation.
The government continues on its path of obviously failed policies regarding taxation. Whilst still doing nothing substantial to tackle high level tax evasion, the government has imposed taxes on the average Greek which have reduced the total amount of revenue those taxes raise, simply by ensuring taxes have priced various commodities out of reach of many consumers.
Tax revenue on fuel has fallen in direct correlation to massively increased taxes. Not only are fewer people driving but as of the end of 2012, 70,000 vehicle owners had handed their registration plates over to the tax office, unable to afford the annual road tax.
Tax revenue on central heating oil dramatically decreased as the majority of homes can no longer afford the fuel, causing many fuel supply businesses out of business. A further consequence has been the dramatic increase in air pollutants as most households return to burning wood for warmth. The hastily imposed emergency property tax introduced in 2011 has resulted in 30,000 homes per month losing their electricity supply as the tax is collected via electricity bills.
The government hopes to restore liquidity to the Greek economy during 2013, with structural reforms taking effect. Even if the government achieves its objectives tens of thousands of Greeks welcome in 2013 with few prospects beyond struggling to survive.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
More about Greek crisis, Greece 2013, anthonis samaras, Greek taxes, greek austerity
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