Tag Archives: crisis

The moment of truth

Mr. Nikos Konstandaras is managing editor and a columnist of Kathimerini, the leading Greek morning daily.  He is also a contributor to The BusinessThinker.com

This editorial is also published in Kathimerini.

If there is anything positive in these feverish days, it is that no one can pretend not to understand the severity of the crisis, be they in Greece or elsewhere.

The fact that the government is preparing measures that include tens of thousand of layoffs in the public sector and a further reduction in pensions means that it understands it has no room to maneuver: It will do that which it fears will lead to its fall. It has to deal not only with the dictates of the troika but also the fact that even its strongest supporters — such as France — can no longer hide their exasperation with Greece’s inability to carry out policy.

Today not even the most zealous of conspiracy theorists can convince anyone that the turbulence in German politics, the cracks in the French banking system and the rollercoaster rides on the international markets are nothing but a concerted effort to buy Greece on the cheap. Continue reading The moment of truth

Greece Missed Chance for a Better Memorandum: (Kathimerini, June 29, 2011)

This is a letter sent to the executive editor of Kathimerini, Athens Greece.It was published on the date sent, June 29, 2011. ( http://bit.ly/mBDPec )Dear Mr Papachelas,
I have been following the Greek financial/economic crisis and events very closely these past 24 months.
Briefly, both Mr [Costas] Karamanlis and Mr [George] Papandreou lost several opportunities to negotiate with the lenders a better agreement than the current Memorandum and the new one, now under debate in Parliament.
There is still time to negotiate better terms. In my estimate there is a window of six to 12 months to do so.
They both lost the opportunity do go to the market and borrow 40+ billion euros to hedge the payments that were coming and thus strengthen their hand in negotiating the Memorandum. The market in the summer and fall of 2009 was very favorable to Greek bonds (interest payment-wise) if I recall correctly.
Currently the debt problems of Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy are interwoven with the Greek debt issue. I believe that the Europeans will work out a financial defense strategy and system to separate the Greek debt from impacting the debt of the others. If they do that it will weaken Greece’s position severely. Therefore, this is the time to negotiate better deals while the Europeans are afraid of a domino effect. Later they will not be.
Continue reading Greece Missed Chance for a Better Memorandum: (Kathimerini, June 29, 2011)