ATHENS – The forecasts for the Greek econony are at a very early stage, stated State Minister Giorgos Gerapetritis to public broadcaster ERT on Thursday, expressing the government's "very high optimism" that it will be able to address the economic repercussions of the crisis.
He attributed incidents of excessive overcrowding seen in recent days to "juvenile impetuousness" and called them "deeply antisocial," adding that the government will not hesitate to take legal measures, if necessary.
At the same time, he accused main opposition SYRIZA of dividing national unity.
Concerning rumours of snap elections, Gerapetritis noted that the government "will not play games on the backs of the Greek people".
Regarding the European Commission's spring forecasts for the economy, he said that "our desire is to be overall champions, not only in the health sector but also in the economy and in social cohesion. The forecasts, wherever they may come from, whether from EU or from the Bank of Greece or the finance ministry, are estimates made at a very early stage and this because we do not yet have a picture of when the crisis will be over in order to fully restart the economy". Additionally, he said, "we do not know how the market, businesses and the consumers will react to the opening of the market."
Gerapetritis noted that Greece's dependence on the service sector, especially transport and tourism, was widely known. " So, in comparison with other countries that have a much stronger primary sector or industrial production, we are in a weaker position because the sectors stricken most are the ones that the Greek economy depends on. So it would not be absurd to say that we will sustain a heavy economic blow," Gerapetritis admitted, while adding that the government "is highly optimistic that we will be able to deal with the economic repercussions of the crisis".