WEB DESK: Last week, Greece passed an initial set of austerity measures imposed by its creditors. These were a mix of economic reforms and budget cuts demanded by the eurozone countries and institutions before bailout talks could continue.
These second sets of measures passed early on Thursday morning were of a more structural nature, including:
- a code of civil protection aimed at speeding up court cases
- the adoption of an EU directive to bolster banks and protect savers’ deposits of less than €100,000
- the introduction of rules that would see bank shareholders and creditors – not taxpayers – cover costs of a failed bank
The passage of the measures means that negotiations on an €86bn European Union bailout can begin.
The reforms include changes to Greek banking and an overhaul of the judiciary system.
Thousands demonstrated outside of parliament as the bill was debated, with protests briefly turning violent as petrol bombs were thrown at police.
There had been fears of a rebellion by MPs but Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras was easily able to muster the support required. In total, the measures received 230 votes in favour and 63 against with five abstentions.
More contentious measures – phasing out early retirement and tax rises for farmers – have been pushed back to August.