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Remittances from Greece decreases

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, July 7
The Minister of Economics, Giorgi Kvirikashvili, claims that the temporal closure of banks in Greece owing to the current crisis will not affect remittances. However, he admits that the total amount of remittances from Greece to Georgia has already declined.

“One week delay will be hardly reflected on Georgia,” Kvirikashvili said, noted that remittances are generally sent once a month or once in several months.

The Minister stressed that the issue that actually concerned him was those Georgians living in Greece.

“The people might lose their jobs,” the Minister said.

When it came to the general statistics remittances from Greece have decreased by 18 % in January-March, the minister said.

“In the course of five years we are in loss of 15-16 million USD,” the minister said.”

Greece is amongst the countries with most Georgian emigrants seeking or having jobs. Lots of people from Georgia left the country during 1990s hardship and traveled to Greece, Italy, Turkey and some other foreign countries in order to feed their families.

Most of the people have not yet returned to Georgia as Georgia’s economic condition has not improved much.

BBC reports that Greek voters have delivered a defiant response to Europe. Political leaders and heads of government had lined up to warn the Greeks that a "No" vote would be a vote to leave the euro. It did not deter them. Indeed many voters seemed to revel in their resistance.

The European Project is now facing its gravest crisis.

The size of the "No" vote surprised the Greek government. In the end the voters agreed with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras that the country's creditors were trying to "asphyxiate" the Greek economy. They bought his argument that a "no" vote would only strengthen his hand in negotiations.

Despite the closed ATMs, the banks on the verge of running out of money and a collapsing economy, Greeks have once again rejected the policy of austerity authored in Berlin and Brussels.

The European Commission, the European Union's executive arm - one of the "troika" of creditors along with the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank - wants Athens to raise taxes and slash welfare spending to meet its debt obligations.

The International Monetary Fund said several days ago that Greece missed a $1.8 billion debt payment, becoming the first developed country to default on a loan to the lending agency.