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German 'grey finance experts' to help Greece

The Local · 30 Sep 2012, 10:16

Published: 30 Sep 2012 10:16 GMT+02:00

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The business magazine Wirtschaftswoche reported that IMF Chief Christine Lagarde is hoping to attract retired German financial experts to help out ailing Greece.

She is said to be looking for people with tax experience and also those who held management positions.

Some 170 tax experts from German state and federal finance offices have already offered their services to the Greek tax authorities. But according to State Secretary Hartmut Koschyk only seven of these experts have actually been sent to Athens to help out.

They offered advice in two and three-day workshops to Greek finance officials, especially in the areas of how to deal with large companies, wealthy individuals, tax audits and enforcement.

Meanwhile, Focus magazine reported on Saturday that Greece is expected to receive its latest bailout instalment of €31 billion. A report due soon from Europe's “Troika” of advisors - the European Union, the IMF and the European Central Bank - is expected to allow the money to be released.

Story continues below…

The magazine said it remains unclear when that report will be released, but an oral mid-way report about Greece’s situation is expected when EU finance ministers meet in Luxembourg on October 8.

The Local/mw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:34 September 30, 2012 by smart2012
Well, it will help the german pensioners to afford some more money keeping in mind pensions in Germany are very low and poverty among german pensioners is increasing :)

Few questions: these guys will have to speak Greek right? Also,as pensioners are not so used with softwares, will they have to be trained on outlook, excel etc etc?

It sounds a very propaganda bild type of article..

But it seems Germany is the only country where they r happy to keep talking about Greece, to hide all the rest where more attentions should be given.. And happily falling into recession :)
12:39 September 30, 2012 by pepsionice
I would say this is like Chrysler saying it just can't manufacture 4-star cars, and Germany offering to send Audi/Porsche experts over to show Chrysler how to do it.

Look, here's the real issues in Greece. First, everyone is avoiding taxes....at every single level, and they got real smart about this over the past twenty years. Second....cash is king and you hire some guy to fix your roof with cash....same with your car mechanic....same with your butcher....so taxes aren't being reported at any significant level. Third....the gov't revenue bucket is tapped to the extreme on pensions. They all think they deserve the pension levels like their counterparts in France, the Netherlands, or Norway.....but their revenue situation is nowhere near what it is in the same three countries. Fourth, it's common for almost all gov't workers in Greece to put in bare minimum hours but get a full-up paycheck....which is comical if you are providing actual services that people regularly require. Finally, almost every significant contract that the gov't has put out in the last three decades....has been corrupted.

So how does this fine German team function? I doubt if they stay more than four weeks, and admit later that Greece cannot be saved because they really don't want any changes to the system.
13:15 September 30, 2012 by smart2012
Pepsionice, Greece is just the escape goat... Germny has made lot of deals with Greece in the last 20 years, and they did not care at all of all what u r talking about. Greece has to improve their systems, however it is the last problem Europe should care about. Issue in Europe is 0 growth, and all big money going away direction china, India, Dubai, brazil, Russia.

Greece does not need to become an industrial country or so, it just need to become competitive against turkey on tourism and agriculture, and as it is today they cannot be (euro not competitive Vs Turkish lira). And Germans today go on vacation in turkey as cheaper and as Germans cannot afford to go to Greece.

And btw, Chrysler with daimler went bankrupt, and it was saved by fiat..
20:28 October 1, 2012 by Rischart99
Unfortunately for both Smart2012 and Greece. Pepsionice is correct. As for the idea of leaving Greece to a purely tourist economy I wonder if Smart2012 is trying to help or destroy Greece. A vast amount of unpaid Greek taxes is currently being invested in London property, a fact the UK govt. is currently very pleased about. Greece has been poorly governed for years and only now is the true picture emerging of its' poor governance. Bringing in experts will help. but Greece really needs to accept that this period of massive and disruptive change is the result of decades of pretence.

Btw. Chrysler has gone bust twice in the last 30 years, at neither time was it owned by Daimler. Check your facts next time.
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