by Anthony Manduca
Greece has cleared the way for fresh IMF and EU financial aid after its Parliament approved two parliamentary votes on sweeping austerity measures. The Greek government’s victory averted an immediate eurozone crisis and paves the way for the payment of €12 billion in aid this month and a deal on a second bailout to replace the €110 billion package agreed to last year.
The austerity measures adopted are indeed harsh and it is not surprising that the country erupted in violence on the day of the first parliamentary vote. The five-year plan put forward by the Greek Socialist government – under immense pressure from the EU and IMF – consists of public spending cuts of €14.32 billion, tax rises worth €14.09 billion and the raising of €50 billion from privatisations.