Greek Finance Minister Sees No Effect from Turkish Crisis

FILE - Greek Financial Minister Euclid Tsakalotos (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris).

ATHENS – Contradicted by market volatility that saw the yield on Greek 10-year bonds rise as 326 billion euros ($369.21 billion) will end on Aug. 20 after more than eight years of austerity, Finance Minister Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos there won’t be any damage from Turkey’s worsening economic crisis that has markets anxious.

He repeated Prime Minister and Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras’ dashed claims that there will be a “clean exit” from the rescue packages although the country’s creditors, the Troika of the European Union-European Central Bank-European Stability Mechanism (EU-ECB-ESM) and the Washington, D.C.-based International Monetary Fund (IMF) said the economy will need monitoring for years.

That’s to prevent from backsliding on reforms the same way he reneged on anti-austerity promises and has he’s trying to wiggle out of more pension cuts coming on Jan. 1, an election year, with his popularity falling after repeatedly breaking his word, hitting workers, pensioners and the poor with more crushing conditions while letting the rich, politicians and tax cheats escape.

Greek bond yields rose above 4 percent in recent days, as markets are worried that Turkey’s financial problems could have wider implications for Europe but Tsakalotos waved off the worries as inconsequential.

In a statement to the Greek website Newpost, Tsakalotos said the government is monitoring developments in Turkey. “However, the problems of the Turkish economy will not affect the Greek economy’s clean exit from the memoranda,” he reportedly said in a statement, without explaining why Greece could be untouched by roiling markets at the same time it’s trying to woo foreign investors scared off by an avalanche of tax hikes raising the corporate rate to 29 percent.

Citing a debt relief deal giving Greece more time to repay the loans at the same time the government has said the debt is unsustainable, he also noted that 9.5 billion euros ($10.76 billion) from the last installment from the loans, for 15 billion euros ($16.99 billion) is being set aside as a cash buffer.

That could carry Greece for as long as 22 months before making a full return to the markets as two previous test bonds were sold successfully but at interest rates more than three times higher than the bailouts before the relief deal.

“The Greek government’s planning is not affected by short-term turmoil in the financial markets. On August 21, Greece turns the page, and this is final,” he said.