Greek Finance Minister Christos Staikouras said this week that support for businesses and employees who are out of a job, due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) health crisis, will be provided in May if needed.
The minister underlined that the government’s fiscal plan already includes the emergency measures without tapping into the country’s 15.7-billion-euro cash reserve. Meanwhile, Greece was set to issue a seven-year bond to help strengthen state coffers and fortify its economy from the sustained impact of Covid-19.
Staikouras on IMF report
Referring to this week’s International Monetary Fund (IMF) report according to which the Greek economy will contract by 10 percent this year as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak, Staikouras said he can neither confirm nor deny any report as the depth and extent of the coronavirus pandemic is still very much unknown. Speaking on MEGA TV, he said that GDP losses are dependent on the development of the crisis as well as on the decisions and actions that each government takes to address the impact of the coronavirus.
“The IMF is presenting the worst-case scenario; EU reports are milder,” he said, adding that Greece is set to recover very quickly from the recession as major growth is projected for 2021.
It should be noted, that Greece will not be the only country falling into deep recession this year. IMF analysts expect the United States economy to contract by about 6 percent in 2020, Germany’s by 7 percent, Italy’s by 9.1 percent, Spain’s by 8 percent, the UK’s by 6.5 percent and China’s by 6.1 percent with grim outlooks for recovery in 2021.
The IMF’s World Economic Outlook report estimates, at the same time, that the global economy will shrink by 3 percent this year plunging the world into a “crisis like no other”, the worst since the Great Depression in the 1930s.