In a press release today, the IMF’s latest mission to Greece reported that the country’s macroeconomic outlook remains the same as previously projected, with some slow growth expected to resume in 2014. The government promises to take some corrective measures to achieve its fiscal targets for this year. The government is still aiming for primary balance in its budget this year. It is still working on controls over excessive health care spending. Here are some of the other steps the government is taking towards reforming its finances:
The income tax, property tax, and tax procedure codes are being reformed, and the autonomy and efficiency of revenue administration is being strengthened. The authorities have also committed to take steps to bring public administration reforms back on track, such as by completing staffing plans by end-year, placing staff in the mobility and reallocation scheme, and meeting the agreed targets for mandatory exits. With the recapitalisation of the banking sector nearly complete, the authorities have committed to further steps to safeguard financial stability, including through the sale of two bridge banks and completion of their strategy for a four-pillar banking system. These reforms are a further important step towards facilitating adjustment and enabling growth. The mission also discussed with the authorities progress in strengthening the social safety net, including through targeted employment and training programmes supported by the EU and a programme to provide access to primary health care for the uninsured.