JANE BURGERMEISTER REPORT:’UK’s Observer explains the economics of the IMF/EU-mandated debt death spiral of Greece ‘
How Greece could pay a heavy price for the eurozone reckless banks
The Observer, Sunday, June 12, 2011
While Germany was locked in an embarrassing public spat with the European Central Bank last week over who should pay the price for a new Greek bailout, fresh evidence was emerging of the impact of the savage cuts Athens has already imposed on its increasingly restive citizens.
The number of people unemployed has shot up by 40% over the past 12 months; the jobless rate now stands above 16%. Among young people it’s a devastating 42%, representing extraordinary human and social cost. Yet the government’s latest plans envisage another four years of slash and burn, taking the deficit from 7.5% of GDP this year to 1% by 2015. It’s extreme fiscal masochism, and it isn’t going to work.
Growth is suffering: the economy expanded by a miserable 0.2% in the first quarter of 2011, official figures revealed. Over the past year, it has contracted by a total of 5.5%, and forecasters – including Greece‘s creditors, the IMF and the ECB – are expecting a further catastrophic decline of more than 3% over the coming 12 months.
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