Ushering in the New Year, Greece assumed the Presidency of the European Union on the 1st of January 2014 following the conclusion of the Lithuanian Presidency.

London MEP Marina Yannakoudakis commented “I welcome Greece’s new role at the forefront of European politics. I congratulate them on taking up the reins and I am sure they will deliver a successful presidency. However, heavy interference from the troika has retarded economic recovery and increased hardship for many Greeks, it’s time for Brussels to back off and realise the sacrifices of the past six years.”

Greece has struggled in the past six years with one of the sharpest economic downturns in recent history and has been subjected to Troika bailout conditions for much of that period. Officials from the IMF, ECB and European Commission have closely monitored the economic management and progress of the Greek government in dealing with the fiscal crisis.

Under these strict conditions, the country has seen high unemployment, heavy public sector cuts and considerable tax rises.

The Greek Presidency comes at a busy time with European Parliamentary elections set for May and intensive efforts to complete any outstanding legislative issues by April. 

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