World

‘Ludicrous!’ EU cracks show as Northern Europe boils with anger at bloc over Greece

.

Toomas Hendrik Ilves, the former President of Estonia, claimed the country showed “responsibility and dedication” towards the European Union during the time of the Greek crisis.

Mr Ilves suggested his political party suffered greatly because it stood side by side the Brussels club during that time.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s ‘Europe Unbound’, Mr Ilves said that many northern European countries were still frustrated with Greece and the EU.

He said: “The problem for example is that we did bail out Greece, Estonia did, Greece, at a time where the minimum wage in Greece was 10 per cent higher than the average wage. In Estonia and the retirement age for civil servants in Greece was 50 and in Estonia it was 62-years-old.

Jean-Claude Juncker and Toomas Hendrik Ilves.

The former President of Estonia claimed northern Europe remains annoyed at the EU and Greece

Related articles

“And their pensions were far, far higher than ours, so the sheer ludicrousness of us bailing them out was quite a difficult feat to pull off in Parliament in Estonia.

“It was one of those cases where the Estonian Parliament showed responsibility and dedication to the European Union at tremendous political cost.

“Especially when you see in hindsight the Greek Government lied about its statistics to the point that they recently convicted their statistician for telling the truth.

“We’re not really keen on that idea to be honest, whatever the current Government’s position at the moment I am not sure but I speak for a sense of how the people in my country feel, about this and I would say that northern Europe in general remains annoyed.”

.

I would say that northern Europe in general remains annoyed

Toomas Hendrik Ilves

Greece is set to end its bailout programme in less than a year, but have been warned about more financial problems.

After implementing a number of EU led changes, Greece is still set for more problems.

Daniel Gros, director of the Centre for European Policy Studies, told CNBC: “None of the structural issues (public administration, enforcement of contracts, and so on) have been resolved.

“The country continues to pass all the laws and regulations required by the Troika (the IMF, the European Commission and the European Central Bank), but on the ground little has changed.”

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble warned the country that Greece must be blamed for its own financial problems.

Nations putting the EU in danger

Mon, October 23, 2017

Euroscepticism is rising across the continent




Play slideshow

Austria: The hard-Right Freedom Party (FPO) has previously been accused of xenophobia and racism AFP/. Images

1 of 7

Austria: The hard-Right Freedom Party (FPO) has previously been accused of xenophobia and racism

He said: “When you ask others for loans, you cannot insult them for granting the loans. It doesn't make sense. Greece's problems are Greece's problems.”

According to a the ‘Parlemeter’ survey, based on face-to-face interviews with citizens from all 28 member states, Greece is among the most Eurosceptic.

EU nationals were asked: “Taking everything into account, would you say that your country has on balance benefited from or not from being a member of the EU?”

Greece saw the majority of people reject the idea that it had benefitted from being a member of the EU, with 48 per cent agreeing. 81 per cent of those from Estonia said they had benefited from being an EU member state.

Related articles

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Close
%d bloggers like this: