Greek finance minister discusses with IMF experts on budget cuts, tax reforms

08:02, April 08, 2010      

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IMF experts began talks with Greek Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou and his crew here Wednesday on how to help the nation to massively cut budget deficit and reform the tax system.

The group of experts is to stay in Athens for two weeks and be divided into two groups to give budget and tax reform advice to Greek finance officials.

The talks will be focused on the reform of the taxation system and the drafting and execution of state budgets, according to an official statement released by the Greek Finance Ministry.

Greece seeks technical assistance and advice from the IMF on curbing tax evasion and drafting and executing a three-year budget instead of one-year from now on.

Till now the IMF experts haven't proposed any new measures, but focused on the practical implementation of the initiatives the Greek government has taken so far, Papaconstantinou told Greek media.

According to reports, the IMF experts made suggestions, similar to the ones they had made five years ago on collecting overdue debts, decreasing bureaucracy and increasing effectiveness of tax offices and strengthening the credibility of fiscal figures.

Greece is facing a debt mountain of nearly 300 billion euros (402 billion U.S. dollars) and has set a formidable goal of slashing four percentage points of its budget deficit this year to meet the European Union's grim request.

Source: Xinhua


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