Greek Foreign Minister: EU Presidency Is OpportunityDiplomacy | January 2, 2014, Thursday // 17:36| views
Photo by EPA/BGNES
Greece’s foreign minister believes the country’s EU presidency is an opportunity to present itself as a full-fledged member of the block, despite the crisis it is faced with.
“We are seeking a new narrative for Europe. We therefore have to bring back into the discussion a Europe of culture, of civilization, of history, of the rule of law, and of the welfare state”, said Evangelos Venizelos in an interview for Euronews.
On January 1, Greece assumed the rotational presidency of the EU, taking over from Lithuania.
Meanwhile, Greece has been suffering 6 years of recession and extreme levels of unemployment (27%), in its worst crisis since entering the union.
“Over the past three and a half years, Greece has made the biggest fiscal adjustment in the history of the western economy. We began back in 2009 with a 12% primary deficit, and now we have achieved a primary surplus”, added Venizelos, who is also Deputy Prime Minister.
The presidency means that Athens becomes an important venue for high-level EU meetings this year.
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