New Democracy Plans Relief for Crunched Greek Middle Class

February 11, 2020

ATHENS – After the former ruling Radical Left SYRIZA admitted deliberately overtaxing the middle class to meet demands from Greece’s international creditors, the New Democracy government said it would bring 1.8 billion euros ($1.97 billion) in breaks.

That was in line with pledges made before taking power in July 7, 2019 snap elections, with the government promising the relief package would be submitted to Parliament after the Easter holiday period, said Kathimerini.

Some 1.16 billion euros ($1.27 billion) will come by abolishing the hated solidarity tax on income that was introduced by a former New Democracy-led coalition in 2011 to help more vulnerable people, continued by SYRIZA.

The remaining relief would come from a 2 percent cut in social security contributions although it wasn’t said what the impact would be on a slowly recovering economy almost a decade after the first of 326 billion euros ($357.01 billion) in international bailouts began.

Those ended on Aug. 20, 2018 and Greece has been limping its way back into the markets although a recent survey found some 70 percent of people still live near or below the poverty line, showing how devastating the crisis was.

The measures are expected to bring an estimated increase of up to 4 percent in the incomes of millions of salaried workers part of a first round of breaks introduced in 2019 by the Conservatives last year.

The creditors, the Troika of the European Union-European Central Bank-European Stability Mechanism (EU-ECB-ESM) must sign off as its envoys will be monitoring Greece’s economy for decades to make sure fiscal targets are met as part of the bailout deals.

One of the conditions, the paper said, is for an agreement on the lowering of a primary surplus target of 3.5 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) which Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said wasn’t sustainable and doesn’t include interest on debt, the cost of running cities and towns, state enterprises, social security and some military expenditures.


ATHENS - Despite the debacle of the collapsed FTX, the Gemini cryptocurrency operation – which blocked customer withdrawals and had deposit problems – was given the OK by Greece's Hellenic Capital Markets Commission to operate in the country.

Top Stories


A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.


Biden Hosts Macron amid Friction over US Climate Law (Video)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Presidents Joe Biden and Emmanuel Macron are celebrating the longstanding U.

ATHENS - Through each of the devastating fires that has ravaged Greece, tragically claiming lives, wiping out homes and livelihoods, and decimating natural areas, the members of the Hellenic Fire Corps have been there on the front lines, making a superhuman effort under adverse conditions.

HONOLULU — When Willette Kalaokahaku Akima-Akau looks out at the the lava flowing from Mauna Loa volcano and makes an offering of gin, tobacco and coins, she will be taking part in a tradition passed down from her grandfather and other Native Hawaiians as a way to honor both the natural and spiritual worlds.

WASHINGTON — America's newest nuclear stealth bomber is making its public debut after years of secret development and as part of the Pentagon's answer to rising concerns over a future conflict with China.

ATHENS - A draft bill about waivering confidentiality in communications and about cybersecurity and protection of citizens' personal data will be debated in a plenary session at Parliament on Thursday, December 8.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.