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Last Updated: Friday, 5 November, 2004, 15:39 GMT
Greece vows to cut budget deficit
Olympic cyclists
Olympic costs took their toll on Greece's budget deficit
Greece has vowed to ensure next year's budget deficit meets European Union limits by curbing public spending and raising revenue through privatisions.

The Greek government said it would also be able to make savings now the huge costs of hosting the Olympics are over.

EU states are expected to have deficits below 3% of gross domestic product but Greece's is set to hit 5.3% in 2004.

Greece's deficit breached the EU cap between 2000 and 2003 as the cost of the Olympics reached 7bn euros(4.8bn).

"The biggest savings will come from a reduction in Olympic Games costs, which will lead to savings of 1.03% of GDP," finance minister George Alogoskoufis said in a written submission to the EU.

The EU has estimated that Greece's budget deficit would drop to 3.6% of GDP next year.

However, Mr Alogoskoufis said he was confident the government action would see it fall to 2.8%.


SEE ALSO:
Deficit woe for Greece post-games
02 Nov 04 |  Business
Greek debt spirals after Olympics
12 Sep 04 |  Business
Olympic costs hit Greek deficit
04 Aug 04 |  Business
Olympics 'may cost Greece dear'
02 Jun 04 |  Business
Greek budget mess earns EU rebuke
20 May 04 |  Business


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