first_imgEight out of 10 Greeks are pessimistic about the short-term future of the debt-ridden economy but one in two are hoping for a return to growth in three years, according to an opinion poll released Tuesday. Some 42.8 percent of people asked do not believe Greece will achieve the goals set.About 79.6 percent of the 1,600 survey participants, conducted for Mega television channel by research company GPO, said they believed the economic situation in Greece, which has been dealing with an acute debt crisis since late 2009, is not going to improve dramatically in the near future. However 54.9 percent were optimistic that Greece could solve the crisis by 2014 through its austerity and reform program. The program is supported financially by the European Union and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which fear a domino effect across Europe. Some 42.8 percent of people asked do not believe Greece will achieve the goals set. Despite reassuring statements by Greek government officials, 48.5 percent of Greek citizens fear more austerity measures will be implemented by the socialist government under pressure from the EU and IMF, which pledged 110 billion euros (138.97 billion US dollars) in aid over a three-year period in May. In exchange, Greece has started implementing drastic efforts to slash its budget deficit from 13.6 percent of GDP to less than 3 percent by 2014 and has proceeded with bold and harsh structural reforms that have caused strong opposition from Greek labor unions. After a break for the summer holidays, labor unions plan a new wave of strikes and demonstrations this autumn over painful cutbacks in salaries, increases in taxes and changes in the pension system. According to the survey, four out of 10 Greeks do not have confidence that a single political party can pull the country out of the economic crisis. About 31 percent of respondents trust the now ruling PASOK party, while 13.4 percent trust the centre-right main opposition New Democracy (ND) party. Three out of 10 believe the two major parties who have led all governments in Greece since the restoration of democracy in 1974, are responsible for the crisis. If general elections were held today in Greece, PASOK and ND would get record low votes, according to the results of the poll. Twenty-seven percent of Greeks said they would not know who to vote for, 28.6 percent would vote for PASOK and 21.1 percent for ND. The Greek Communist Party would receive 9 percent of the vote, the far-right populist LAOS party 6.8 percent and the Left SYRIZA coalition less than the 3 percent threshold to enter parliament. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img

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