Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’ message to the citizens
My fellow citizens, We are communicating again, as I have promised you, about the new developments on the fronts of our health and economy. To announce our new initiatives. But also to send you a message of unity, discipline and responsibility again.
Let me repeat it as simply as possible: The difficulties are still ahead of us. We have taken drastic measures earlier than other countries to reduce the spread of the virus, but we do not yet know how effective it will be.
The coming weeks will also be decisive for our country. It is up to us to prove tough and complicated but not nightmarish. So I ask you not to tear down everything we have built lately.
In Italy they do not have coffins to bury their dead. And yet here I see, to some, an unjustified complacency. I won’t tolerate it.
Yes, we have every reason to be optimistic that science will deal with this pandemic sooner than we expected. But for the next few months there will be no magic solution.
We will rely on the strengths of the National Health System, which is rapidly expanding: We add intensive beds and beds, we buy respirators and consumables. And we hire 2,000 nurses and specialist doctors.
The private sector operates under the absolute guidance of the Ministry of Health. My heartfelt thanks to all who are present, with significant donations, at this difficult time. But I also call on the absentees to reflect on their responsibilities.
I also call on citizens to hear only the official announcements. Fake news is bad for health, physical and mental.
The arsenal of restrictive measures the government can take is almost exhausted. Evil wants a link next to him to spread out. And this chain of terror can be broken if we take a step back. If we stay home, avoid all unnecessary contacts.
This weekend is an opportunity to show our social responsibility: As we have no professional obligations, we are not in the market! We stay home and read, we listen to music, we watch movies, we communicate with ours, the ones we love.
Let’s go for a walk or a run alone. And in any case, we avoid meetings.
It is up to all of us and our behavior, in the end, if the government needs to take even more drastic measures to restrict traffic.
One last thing. The virus knows no boundaries and distances. The smaller the island where one believes he will resort to protection, the more difficult, if not impossible, his care will be if he becomes ill there.
My fellow citizens,
The coming months will also be very difficult for the economy. Now, however, we have more weapons in our quiver to support the world of work and production.
Following our release from the unbearable surpluses of the past, yesterday’s decision by the ECB also puts our country in a quantitative easing program.
Finally, after 10 years of crisis, Greece is treated just like the other European countries.
This development enables us to implement a much more ambitious program of support for the real economy. This program is dynamic and will be tailored to the developments.
Today, I announce that the State Budget is being revised. So, in addition to the already 3.8 billion measures already launched, about 3 billion more will be allocated to support the economy from the state budget. And at least but so much of the redesign of the NSRF.
I mean, for example, about $ 10 billion, without the forecasts for providing additional liquidity to businesses from the available financial tools.
As a consequence, I can today announce that the one-off 800 euro wage is being extended to the end of April and to those working in businesses that continue to operate with a reduced turnover.
The measure, therefore, concerns not only the companies that suspended their operations, but the vast majority of private sector workers. Of which the state will also cover all insurance contributions.
All 800 freelancers and self-employed workers in the country will receive the € 800 boost. The obligation to pay contributions will also be suspended for them.
Eight hundred euros, however, will also be given to all those who were fired or forced to resign from March 1 until yesterday. We care, above all, those who were hit first and hardest by the crisis.
The Easter gift will be paid in full by all employers to all employees, just as they are entitled to it. The exact time of payment will be announced by the relevant Ministries.
In any case, the extraordinary Easter gift will be given this year by the heroes in green and white T-shirts: the country’s hospital workers and Civil Protection officials who work around the clock to keep us all healthy.
I want to emphasize, once again, that no one in our country will be left alone until this adventure is over.
And my personal commitment is to not stop fighting for a double goal.
The greatest wealth of our country is its people, the Greeks and the Greeks, and their health is my first concern.
But their well-being is also a priority. The government will, therefore, keep alive the seed of growth that has already begun to bear fruit.
The next day may be better. And it will dawn brighter if we remain responsible and disciplined. United but far from each other!
We stay home, we remain optimistic, we stay determined, we stay – above all – healthy!