Minister: Varoufakis did brief Cabinet in 2015 over IOU plan, 'which I support'

Monday, 10 July 2017 20:31
UPD:20:32
Eurokinissi/ΖΩΝΤΑΝΟΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ

Alternate Agriculture Minister Yiannis Tsironis, in comments to the Athens-based Skai television station, said Varoufakis “presented us with something that was never implemented, which I, in fact, supported and wrote about in my blog; (namely) for IOUs to exist,” he said.

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A current Cabinet member on Monday confirmed that controversial Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis did, in fact, present a “voucher payment” plan to ministers back in 2015, near the climax of shambolic negotiations with creditors in the first half of that year.

Alternate Agriculture Minister Yiannis Tsironis, in comments to the Athens-based Skai television station, said Varoufakis “presented us with something that was never implemented, which I, in fact, supported and wrote about in my blog; (namely) for IOUs to exist,” he said.

 Tsironis, who hails politically from a tiny Ecologists-Greens party in the country, further explained the unprecedented currency model – at least in a peacetime European economy – as such:

“I am a pharmacist, and the state owes me 50,000 euros, I receive an IOU because there’s a (cash) liquidity problem; I give it (IOU) to my supplier; my supplier pays off his {tax bill}; a cyclical transaction is thus achieved without us using scarce cash that was missing at the time,” he said.

Tsironis wasn’t asked if the IOU, or “voucher”, as Varoufakis called it, would have been accepted by the pharmaceutical supplier’s foreign partners, for imports, for instance.

The latest Varoufakis saga, as expected, generated a firestorm of criticism, with the main opposition New Democracy (ND) party gain demanding the convening of a Parliamentary committee of inquiry into the mercurial ex-minister’s actions and intentions.

In response, Varoufakis took to Twitter, writing in Greek that “Of course I detailed the parallel system of payments to the Cabinet. The failure is that it (system) hasn’t been implemented yet; something absolutely necessary.”

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