Other available languages: EL
Brussels, 6 March 2012
Letter from President Barroso to Prime Minister Papademos proposing follow-up actions further to their meeting of 29 February on measures to support jobs and growth in Greece
"Dear Prime Minister,
It was a great pleasure to meet with you on 29 February to discuss in very concrete terms the implementation of the second programme for Greece which we both see as a comprehensive programme for structural reform which will lay the foundations for a new, competitive and dynamic Greece. As my colleagues and I underlined at our meeting, the Commission is ready to support the Greek authorities in taking decisions that can restore confidence and begin the process of revitalising the Greek economy.
As we discussed, there are a variety of steps that should be taken right away to improve the business environment; to support small businesses and young people; and to remove the bottlenecks in public administration and the financial system that are preventing the structural funds from flowing to where they are needed, holding back growth and job creation. The European Commission has already paid more than €8 billion of the €20 billion allocated to Greece since 2007 through the EU structural funds. We are keen to help your authorities target the remaining funds on stimulating growth and competitiveness. For now, there is no shortage of funds but as we discussed there are still too many open questions and administrative hurdles to be overcome before the available funds can reach the real economy. In priority areas we need to identify where the bottlenecks are and decide on how to remove them within a clear timeframe. This often has to be done top down which is why I am prepared to work in partnership with you to get things moving. As immediate follow up to our meeting I would like to propose that our officials work together on the following priority areas:
To give these measures real momentum, I propose that the Task Force representatives meet in Athens with officials designated by you to work, jointly with other relevant Commission services, specifically on these issues and to report back to us by 28 March with clear recommendations on actions to be taken under each heading, identification of who is responsible for acting and with a timeline for the resolution of the problems identified.
I look forward to receiving your reactions and support for this follow up to our meeting."