May 9, 2021



BBC wonders whether Greece is really on the road to recovery

BBC’s Jontly Bloom reminisces her time in front of a TV camera on a hot rooftop overlooking the Greek Parliament six months earlier. Back then, the world was focused on the future of Greece and whether it would eventually result in a forced ejection from the eurozone.

There were sighs of relief all round and then the story slowly but steadily retreated from the headlines, but Bloom wonders if the danger for Greece is really over.

Greece survived and the world is no longer talking about whether it will be broke and the government is making a start in the introduction of reforms as part of the bailout conditions to release funding for the country, but Bloom believes that the reforms are “small beer compared with what the Greek government originally promised. Athens has raised only a few billion euros so far from privatisations versus an original target of €50bn; due to bureaucratic delays and a lack of political will.”

Though Greece is committed to privatizations, somehow not many of them seem to happen and there is a great deal of foot dragging that has kept members of the eurozone awake at night. Bloom points to reforms that are “stuck in the mud”. Then, there’s the “elephant in the room” that is none other, according to Bloom, than the Greek pension system that is described as complicated and expensive.

After outlining the challenges Greece needs to face, Bloom decides it is too early to say that Greece is out of danger. “It is still not the master of its own destiny and struggling month by month to enact the reforms it should have introduced years ago, in order to get the next few billion euros that will keep it going, once again.”

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