Friday, October 7, 2011


Statements by the Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister of the Hellenic Republic Mr. Evangelos Venizelos and the Vice-Chancellor and Finance Minister of the Federal Republic of Germany Mr. Phillip Rösler, after their meeting at the Parliament in Athens

redsq Philipp Rösler: Ladies and gentlemen, dear colleague Mr. Venizelos, we really held, once again, exceptionally good talks. What we talked about was, of course, the overall crisis in Europe. We reached to the conclusion that this crisis has two underlying causes: On the one hand, the indebtedness of states and on the other, the lack of competition.

If we want peoples to accept what they are called upon to do, both in Greece and in Europe, as well as in the euro area, we will have to create a true vision. This is the view and principle that I keep repeating: that there will have to be a Union for stability. Europe for stability, that is. This is good for the euro area and for Europe overall, in order to defend Europe from outside attacks.

We also discussed with the Minister about the pending cases between German businesses and the Greek state and I am truly grateful that the Minister himself will take over and provide for a solution in this matter. Over the next few days, we will already see decisions taken and positive results.

This is a real strong message for the German industry, for the German private initiative, so that every German investor who wishes to come to your country and make an investment –something which will enforce and enhance your country’s competitiveness- can have a reason to do so.

So, in this trip I can declare that I am very content and happy by the results.

redsq Ev. Venizelos: I welcomed in Athens with great joy the Vice-Chancellor and Finance Minister of the Federal Republic of Germany, Mr. Phillip Rösler. We had a very interesting and creative chat about our common vision that is Europe, the euro area, the Euro.

Mr. Rösler views Greece always as a member of the euro area and the message that we convey is one of stability and perspective for our common currency and our common institutional home, the euro area and the European Union.

Greece goes through a very difficult and critical stage. But the crisis is also an opportunity. It is an opportunity for the strengthening of competitiveness through a series of tough but necessary structural reforms. The decisions that we take are decisions that help the country in the long-term; they help Greek citizens and it is very important that we realize that, not just in Greece but also abroad.

Greece wants to become an even more investment-friendly and growth-friendly country. The presence of German businesses here is long and successful and we want this presence to multiply. We will resolve all the pending problems which are small and very few. Most of all, however, we formulate the institutional framework that will attract Foreign Direct Investment in Greece, with the support of European institutions, the support of the European Commission, of the European structural Funds and the European Investment Bank.

We realize very well what stability in Europe means, what it means to have a stable and credible euro. Stability is the basis for growth and, of course, of social cohesion because we are a monetary Union, we are a Union whose primary goal is currency and prices stability.

But, we address people and we must convince our citizens. We must convince Greek citizens, too, that their sacrifices matter, and the German citizens that the assistance they provide to Greece is beneficial many times over, for Germany and for Europe. And that is the case because Greece will honor this assistance up to the last euro. And most of all, the strengthening of structural reforms will pay out and therefore there will be a necessary reciprocation, through investments that will also be developed in areas where we have a comparative advantage, such as tourism and the renewable energy resources.

I would like to thank my dear colleague, Mr. Rösler, for his willingness to help our country and for his vision about Europe and I want to wish that the rest of his visit will be successful. redsq

Tags: Statements