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Skylakakis: "Greece 2.0" Plan to Lead the Country to a New Era

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Deputy Finance Minister Theodoros Skylakakis (Photo by Eurokinissi/ Yannis Panagopoulos)

ATHENS -- The National Recovery and Resilience Plan "Greece 2.0" aims to lead the country - its economy, society and institutions - to a new era, Alternate Finance Minister Theodoros Skylakakis said on Wednesday. Presenting the plan, Skylakakis said that "in economic terms, the primary goal of the Plan is to cover the big gap in investments, national product and employment, a gap that was endemic to Greek economy's performance during the last decade, which was made worse due to the coronavirus pandemic. In this framework, the National Plan aims to mobilise significant private sector forces, boosting private investments and using cooperation between public- and private-sector partnerships and energy services companies to carry out public investments and to mobilise significant additional private capital."

To implement the plan, Greece is asking for all the funds envisaged by the Recovery Fund, or 17.8 billion euros in subsidies and 12.7 billion in European loans. With the use of these funds and by promoting private investments, "Greece 2.0" seeks to mobilise investment funds totaling 57 billion euros.

"Greece 2.0" is based on four pillars: Green transition, digital transition, social and that concerning economic and institutional transformation.

1. Green transition investments include an extensive programme to renovate houses, commercial property, public buildings and infrastructure, energy interconnection with Greek islands, promoting strategic urban works, large investments in anti-flooding works, a new national reforestation plan, protecting biodiversity, large investments on civil protection and investments in the use of land.

2. Digital transition investments include investments in fibre optics infrastructure, developing 5G network in motorways, digitalisation of archives in health, justice, city planning, immigration, social insurance, etc, IT systems to manage transactions between public administration and citizens, investments to combat tax evasion and the digital transformation of enterprises.

3. Private investments in institutional transformation include strong incentives for private investments, significant infrastructure projects, investments to strengthen culture, tourism and promoting programmes to support the agrifood sector.

4. Investments in the social pillar include large programmes to boost employment and vocational training to develop digital skills, digital transformation of education, health and investments to enhance social justice and a social protection network.

The "Greece 2.0" plan is full harmonised with EU goals for a faster transition of the Greek economy towards a green and digital growth model, achieving shares of 38 pct and 22 pct in these actions, respectively. Overall, it is an extremely demanding plan that requires strong effort, adherence to goals, transparency, adherence to all national and European rules and avoiding unfruitful debate, Skylakakis said, adding that the plan could change the course of the country and make - in many ways - life better for all Greeks".