ATHENS: Greece’s government has declared war on corruption that will cost the country €100 billion every year. However, as the challenges ahead are enormous, Greece experts say.
Panayiotis Nikoloudis, a well respected former Supreme Court prosecutor with a long history in tackling financial crimes, was named Greece’s first ever minister of state for combating corruption. Under this role, Nikoloudis has been charged with heading up the anti-graft crusade which was presented as a top priority of the Radical Left administration.
Greece Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has said the campaign will start by combating tax evasion. Addressing the parliament recently, Nikoloudis said the government expected to retrieve at least €2.5 billion within months.
It was still a drop in the ocean, local experts commented, if one considers that the shadow economy costs Greece €60 billion annually and tax dodging about €30 billion, according to official data from the Greek statistics agency and the global anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International.