Monday, June 29, 2015

Transparent Varoufakis blogs out what he told the Eurogroup

The media complained today that Yanis Varoufakis avoided to make comments to the press. However yesterday he did publish at his blog his full intervention in the Eurogroup:

Selected excerpts:

What makes it impossible to pass the institutions’ proposal through Parliament is the lack of an answer to the question: Will these painful measures at least give us a period of tranquillity during which to carry out the agreed reforms and measures? Will a shock of optimism counter the recessionary effect of the extra fiscal consolidation that is being imposed on a country that has been in recession for 21 consecutive quarters? The answer is clear: No, the institutions’ proposal is offering no such prospect.


At the same time, we do not have a mandate to turn down the institutions’ proposals either, cognizant of the critical moment in history we find ourselves in. Our party received 36% of the vote and the government as a whole commanded a little more than 40%. Fully aware of how weighty our decision is, we feel obliged to put the institutions’ proposal to the people of Greece. We shall endeavour to spell out to them fully what a Yes to the Institutions’ Proposal means, to do the same regarding a No vote, and then let them decide. For our part we shall accept the people’s verdict and will do whatever it takes to implement it – one way or another.


The Greek government is now asking the electorate to answer the question you put it to me Jeroen [Djisselbloem, President of the Eurogroup] – especially when you said, and I quote, “you can consider this, if you wish, a take or leave it proposal”. Well, this is how we took it and we are now honouring the institutions and the Greek people by asking the latter to deliver a clear answer on the institutions’ proposal.


To those who instruct us to phrase the referendum question as a euro-drachma dilemma, my answer is crystal clear: European Treaties make provisions for an exit from the EU. They do not make any provisions for an exit from the Eurozone.

He also includes a postscript about what I called the Euro-putsch, i.e. when he was forced out of the Eurogroup. He does not issue an opinion though, although it is obvious he does feel offended, as should all Greeks and all Europeans.

Apparently there is only a very shallow legal frame for the Eurogroup (a protocol annexed to the Treaty of Lisbon), which is basically a discussion committee without formal power, but the protocol clearly reads "The Ministers of the Member States whose currency is the euro shall meet informally", this is the definition of the Eurogroup, hence excluding Yanis means that the meeting was not one of the Eurogroup but something else.

The entry also includes a video of the press conference held on Saturday. 

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