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Today, the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu discussed Estonia’s positions on the First Review of The Second Economic Adjustment Programme for Greece and amendments to the related memorandum of understanding. The Committee decided by consensus to support the positions expressed by the Government.

“The Troika has concluded the interim assessment of the Adjustment Programme for Greece and assesses the efforts of Greece as sufficient. As at 19 November, Greece has completed all 72 prior actions required by the memorandum. The budget of 2013 has been passed, additional measures have been established for reducing the budget deficit, the Government has approved the medium-term budget strategy, the institutional framework of privatisation has been strengthened and obstacles in the sale of assets have been removed. Also, tax administration reforms have been carried out, public expenditure in the health care sector has gone down by almost 1 billion and the retirement age has been increased from 65 to 67 years,” the Chairman of the EU Affairs Committee Taavi Rõivas said.

The renewed memorandum of cooperation for Greece includes approximately 500 commitments in public finances, labour market, health care, financial sector, product and service market and many other areas, including 72 prior actions which, in the opinion of the Troika, have been completed 100%. By amendments to the memorandum, the deadline for meeting the fiscal targets is postponed by two years. The debt ratio of Greece should reach 124 % of GDP in 2020 and substantially below 110% in 2022, respectively. The nominal budget deficit should fall below 3% of GDP in 2016.

With the approval of the amendments to the memorandum of mutual understanding for Greece and a positive outcome of the buyback of Greek government bonds, the results of which will be announced on 13 December, the next disbursement to Greece will be approved, equalling € 42.1 billion, which will go towards funding the second step of the bank recapitalisation (€ 23.8 bn) and the cash needs of the government (18.3 bn).

The Riigikogu Press Service