Wednesday 26 October 2016

The last thing Greece needs is another bailout

Published 09/07/2015 | 02:30

Alexis Tsipras attends a debate on Greece at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France
Alexis Tsipras attends a debate on Greece at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France

A further Greek bailout could do more harm than good. The country is already up to its neck in debt and yet the EU is planning to put another albatross over its head. The only solution for Greece is to write down its debt significantly, reschedule its payments, or cancel its debt.

  • Go To

Clearly, it is costing a fortune to run the country and one has to seriously question its ability to pay back any debt, nevermind another bailout.

Greece's overall economic viability is also in doubt, in addition to its chronically political instability.

The Greek economy is chronically dependent on tourism, which is seasonal and will not pull Greece out of its economic difficulties alone.

The bottom line is that Greece has no money and is essentially a bankrupt country. What in the name of God is a further bailout going to do for Greece other than get Greeks into more difficulty? Greece has had two bailouts since 1998 and they have not worked - just a stay of execution.

A further bailout is now being proposed in a desperate effort to stop the rot and to save the euro-market.

The only way out is to restructure the country's debt or cancel it altogether and start with fresh capital and wide-sweeping reforms.

The old adage of throwing good money after bad is all too evident in the Greek predicament.

Reforms will have to be meticulous and excruciating for Greece to stand any chance, but it is by no means certain that even if severe austerity comes in it will solve Greece's long-term problem of capital adequacy.

It's a hell of a mess!

Maurice Fitzgerald,

Shanbally, Co Cork


Colette Browne in Tuesday's article 'EU should take lesson from German history and give Greeks a break' failed to mention that the assets that backed the external German debt after the last war were virtually all completely destroyed during the war or by hyperinflation after the war.

This is not the case in Greece at the moment. The write-down Germany received was only an acceptance of the reality of a severely depleted asset base.

It should also have been noted in her article that for a debt write-down to occur, the creditor asset, or in Ireland's case the €347m the Irish people have loaned to Greece, will be written down at a loss to the Irish people.

I think even the Irish hard left would find that a hard sell to the Irish electorate considering our own budget constraints.

Criostoir McGrath

Clonmel, Co Tipperary


One false move can sink Ireland

Because the Government has pledged a cost-cutting, vote-catching Budget, possibly already in place, Finance Minister Michael Noonan has to say: "The current pandemonium in Greece will not affect us." Of course it will.

Noonan and the Taoiseach's instruction to Greece's Alexis Tsipras on how to conduct their economy fell on deaf ears. Both countries are different, as are their strategies and solutions to solving debt.

Neither should they copy British Chancellor George Osborne's Budget plans. He has already been elected with a huge majority; sterling is currently very strong and he has safe scope to play about with figures. Ireland's debt is still on a knife-edge and the economy is only in the process of surfacing.

Everybody agrees now that the bailout of 2010 was necessary, but not the €60bn inflicted on us by the Troika, with its brutally unjust payback terms. Neither the Taoiseach nor Finance Minister earned a clap on the back in their follow-on dealings with this mob.

The Irish Government should put into practice the wisdom gained from past errors and realise one false move now and the country could be engulfed in the 2008 quagmire all over again.

James Gleeson,

Thurles, Co Tipperary


Has anyone noticed how the Greek government has democratically accepted their people's vote. They have accepted it 100pc, not like the Irish Government when they don't get what they want.

The Irish Government simply tell its people: you don't understand fully what's going on here (you are a stupid nation). So to make really sure you understand you are going to have to vote again until you get it right.

Right or wrong. I have a huge respect for Greece's courage.

Bernadette Keating

Portmarnock, Co Dublin


Injustice of Greek debt

Greece has to pay its debts but the banks didn't have to pay theirs - we did. The Greek people have to pay tax but the multinational corporations, run by the wealthiest people in the world, pay practically none.

One law for the rich and another for the rest of us - who fund them.

Maeve Halpin

Ranelagh, Dublin 6


David McWilliams advises the Greeks to leave the eurozone and 'adopt the Chinese Renminbi' [Opinion, July 8].

Why did he not advise them to adopt the Russian rouble?

Would it not give them the same advantages?

A. Leavy

Sutton, Dublin 13


A greater threat than alcohol

Concern is justly expressed in Eilish O'Regan's article and in your editorial on Tuesday over alcohol use by Irish women during pregnancy.

Research suggests that an unborn baby is at real risk of mental and physical problems from alcohol and that the widespread use of even low levels of alcohol during pregnancy is a "significant public health concern".

Please re-read the above paragraph, substituting the word "abortion" for "alcohol".

Those who are aghast over the risks of alcohol consumption to an unborn baby must surely abhor the total physical elimination of the unborn baby in abortion.

Could abortion not also be referred to as a "significant public health concern" rather than a so-called "right to choose"?

Would a survey show that pro-abortion supporters believe in the right to choose to drink alcohol during pregnancy?

There are indeed grounds for real concern when our Government insists on total abstinence from alcohol during pregnancy, while at the same time it is considering bringing in legislation for abortion.

Helena Byrne

Enniscorthy, Co Wexford

Irish Independent

Read More

Promoted articles

Don't Miss

Editor's Choice