Wednesday, September 05, 2012

The EU Troika to impose a 6-day week on Greek workers?

Christiane Schlötzer in Troika soll längere Arbeitszeit für Griechen fordern Süddeutsche Zeitung 04.09.2012 passes along a report from the Greek business paper Imerisia that claims the Troika (EU Commission, IMF, ECB) is seriously suggesting that Greeks should start working six days a week. Plus get paid less and employers have the right to fire people more easily, the latter both known as part of "labor market flexibility" in neoliberal jargon.

Reportedly the Greek government has turned them down on the six-day week, so far. But the EU (i.e., Germany) is still putting a major squeeze on them for more and more austerity: the so-called labor market flixbility, privatization, deregulation.

George Gilson, Merkel lays down the law Athens News08/24/2012 reported several days ago about the dreary particulars of what German Chancellor "Frau Fritz" Merkel demands:

German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivered a stern warning to visiting Prime Minister Antonis Samaras after extensive talks about the Greek bailout programme in Berlin.

“We expect Greece to deliver all that has been promised," Merkel declared. In remarks that were unusually sharp for a joint news conference, she stressed that Berlin has heard words in the past but now expects deeds.

The tough talk contrasted sharply with the head of state honours and diplomatic smiles with which Samaras was received on his first official visit, complete with red carpet and band. ...

Merkel stressed privatisation, a balanced budget, and structural reform as the three areas in which palpable results are expected.

It is perhaps no coincidence that privatisation was mentioned first, as there will likely be interest – in Germany, France and internationally - in money-making enterprises and prime real estate that can be acquired at cut rate due to the crisis. [my emphasis]
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