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'Europe will vote Greece', PM tells 'Vimagazino'
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras stressed his confidence that Greece's European partners will continue to support the country, in an interview granted to the Greek Sunday supplement 'Vimagazino' released this weekend. "Europe will vote Greece. The partners will see the changes being carried out. We are sending the right messages and restoring the country's credibility," Samaras said, predicting that things will get better.
Regarding the latest package of austerity cuts agreed by the party leaders in the coalition government last week, the prime minister emphasised that the package had to be finalised and voted on in the space of a few days in order for Greece to receive the next tranche of vital bailout loans. "The next tranche is necessary in order to restore liquidity to the economy. It cannot delay. Even healthy businesses are threatened with failure and unemployment is growing," Samaras said.
On the issue of political corruption, especially in relation to a money-laundering case lately revealed in the press, Samaras said that the 'zero tolerance' policy for corruption still applied since 'by leaving shadows we not only save the guilty but also tarnish [the reputations of] the innocent". He emphasised that the best defence was to immediately shed light on everything and reveal the whole truth and stressed that democracy did not face danger only from its enemies but also from the negligence of those who were appointed to defend it.
The premier also underlined that the government's work will be judged in terms of progress and a reduction of unemployment."Whenever the economy adjustment process is completed and liquidity returns, then I will give the battle from the development ministry."
Commenting the course of the government's work, he said the "government has been working hard from the first minute” and referred to defence ministry's efforts against illegal immigration.
Regarding state revenues, the prime minister said there are margins for further cuts in the health sector from waste in the acquisition of materials, adding that the battle against tax evasion remains the government's first priority. Samaras also estimated that promoting privatisations will enhance the Greek economy and will attract investments, which is a prerequisite for the country's progress.
SOURCE: ATHENS NEWS AGENCY