Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis met today with the German Federal Minister of Finance Christian Lindner at Maximos Mansion.
At the beginning of their meeting, they made the following statements:
Kyriakos Mitsotakis: A lot has changed, I would hope for the better, also in the country, since I think we took over in spite of all the difficulties. I think the country is moving in the right direction. I would also like to thank you for your public comments praising our reform agenda, because for us, what was very important was to be able to simultaneously deal with all the crises that we had to manage over the past three years, but not to stop when it comes to implementing reforms that would ensure long-term growth for the country, such as digitizing of things/ state, which I know is of great interest to you as well. So I think, as we will be entering into our fourth year of our mandate in July. But I think overall, in terms of the reform progress, I’m quite happy. And I’m also happy that we’ll be exiting the enhanced surveillance mechanism in August. And of course, our goal remains to return to investment grade in 2023. And I think it is perfectly doable. So welcome and it is good to see you again.
Christian Lindner: Thank you very much. Thank you for having us. We really appreciate the effort the Greek government makes, and I congratulated my colleague, the Finance Minister on the impressive numbers you can present.
The objective of the Greek government to return to investment grade and to follow a reliable path of debt restructure is very important for us. And this is why we are supporting the transition from the enhanced surveillance to normal post-program surveillance.
I think this is the return to gradual normality. And we want to encourage our Greek friends and partners to continue this ambitious reform agenda, since it has proven its worth and effectiveness. And so thank you very much for having us and I am really looking forward to continuing the very close cooperation between the German and the Greek government.
During the meeting, issues of bilateral cooperation were discussed, with emphasis on the energy sector. Kyriakos Mitsotakis briefed Christian Lindner on the government’s initiatives to diversify energy sources in the EU, which are turning Greece into an energy transfer hub for the Balkans and Southeastern Europe, but also a bridge to the Middle East and Africa.
The Prime Minister also spoke about his recent trip to Astypalea and the six-year pilot program of cooperation with the Volkswagen Group for the upgrade of the island to become the first “Smart and Sustainable” island in the Mediterranean.
Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed that the government remains committed to its reform program and the economic policy to reduce taxation, create a favorable environment for foreign investment, support the most vulnerable and its growth orientation, despite the additional pressure on public finances caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.