The government seeks to bring more funding in addition to the initial 4 billion euros to Greece, through the Recovery Fund, for 2021
This effort (over 13% of 30.5 billion euros) was mentioned by the Minister of Finance Christos Staikouras speaking at the Delphi Economic Forum. “We will seek to receive an additional amount,” he said, adding that if this happens, the next installments will not be reduced, but funding will become more forward-looking.
He even mentioned that the arrival of funds will begin in the third quarter of 2021.
He explained that the Recovery Fund will lead to a 7% increase in GDP and a 4% increase in employment. According to the minister, a significant amount of the Fund’s grants goes to the country’s small and medium enterprises.
1.5 billion for SMEs
The minister noted that 1.5 billion of the Recovery Fund grants will be directed to small and medium enterprises. The grants will be directed to the digital transformation of small and medium enterprises, to the diversification of the tourism product (mountain tourism, medical tourism, etc.), to the agri-food sector and to the program “I save: for digital transformation (375 million euros), for diversification of the tourism product (260 million euros), for agri-food tourism (250 million euros) and for the “I save” program (450 million euros).
Mr. Staikouras spoke about a holistic government plan to strengthen the private sector of the economy, which has four branches: Grants from the Recovery Fund, fiscal policy, reduction of “red” loans to increase funding from the banking sector and the Fund’s lending program.
The Minister pointed out the assistance that the Fund will give to the Greek economy, identifying it as follows:
-Private investments will increase by an additional 20% in relation to their amount without funding from the Fund.
– The GDP will increase in 2026 by 7 points, while especially this year it will be 3.6% instead of 2.4%.
-Employment will increase in 2026 by 4 additional units, which “translates” to about 200,000 new jobs.
Asked about the fiscal policy pursued, the minister said that the reductions in taxes and levies began in 2019 and continue today with the package, agreed upon with the institutions, and submitted to Parliament yesterday. He noted that “we are taking advantage of the country’s credibility and fiscal flexibility, but without leading to fiscal derailment.” He concluded by saying that “when there is a secure fiscal space, it will continue to be used for permanent reductions in taxes and levies.”
Regarding the EU spring estimates that see a bigger increase in GDP this year, he commented: “I am glad that the view of the European Commission for the course of the Greek economy is even more optimistic.”