Daily Management Review

Greek Parliament Votes in Favor of 3rd Bailout Package, 42 Ruling Party Members Oppose


08/14/2015




Greek Parliament Votes in Favor of 3rd Bailout Package, 42 Ruling Party Members Oppose
Greece moved one step closer to being able to repay the debt to European Cnetral bank and remain with the Eurozone after its parliament approved a draft third bailout of about €85bn (£61bn).

Aided by votes from opposition parties, the parliament passed the package after a marathon all-night session and is likely to call a confidence vote due to internal divisions.

As predicted there were about 42 votes against the package being approved from among the ruling Syriza party members of the parliament as the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras urged his fellow members of parliament to vote 'yes'. The ‘no’ votes included one from the former finance minister Yannis Varoufakis.

Results showed a overwhelming majority of the parliament members, 222, had voted in favor of the package while 64 members voted against. There were 11 abstentions and three absentees.

There was severe criticism of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras form within the Syriza party members against the austerity measures that were imposed by creditors of the bailout package. The austerity measures include tax rises and spending cuts, removal of farmer subsidy and admission of pre tax for everyone.

Late of Monday night, when third bailout package was finalized by the creditors for Greece, they agreed to a budget with a primary deficit of 0.25% of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2015, improving to a 0.5% surplus in 2016, 1.75% in 2017 and a 3.15% surplus in 2018.

It is expected that the finance ministers from the Eurozone member states would discuss the terms of the bailout on Friday itself and the agreement is expected to be approved by the finance ministers despite some opposition from Germany.

Reports from Athens said that there were some ‘furious exchanges’ during the debate before the voting for the package as government spokeswoman Olga Gerovasili admitted of  divisions within Syriza were now so deep that a formal split was probably inevitable.

It has also been reported recently that the Greek Prime Minister Tsipras is most likely to call of a fresh elections to test and the strengthen his position in the party and run a stable government after dissuading rebel members from within the leftist ruling party at a party congress before calling for the elections. On Friday, Athens media reported that Tsipras could call for a confidence vote for the government on August 20.
 
However given the present situation of the Greek parliament it is most likely that the country would head for an election as a senior lawmaker, Makis Voridis from the opposition New Democracy party confirmed that his party would not vote in favour of the government. Added to this are doubts about which way the rebel members of parliament form the ruling Syriza party would vote. In this situation analysts see a possible defeat for the Tsipras government and likelihood of fresh national elections.

"I do not regret my decision to compromise. We are not exulting but we are also not mourning over this difficult agreement. I have my conscience clear that it is the best we could achieve under the current balance of power in Europe, under conditions of economic and financial asphyxiation imposed upon us," Tsipras is reported to have told lawmakers.

 (source: www.reuters.com & www.digitallook.com) 






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