Greece’s new national unity government has presented its 2012 budget plan to parliament. It aims to cut the country’s deficit by more than a third from this year’s level to 5.4 per cent of GDP.
Technocrat Prime Minister Lucas Papademos is now leading Greek efforts to avoid bankruptcy and a possible exit from the euro.
His Finance Minister says Athens will not need to pass any new austerity measures next year if reforms that have already been approved are put in place.
Anti-austerity activists joined thousands in the capital on Thursday to mark the anniversary of a 1973 student uprising that helped bring down Greece’s military dictatorship.
While many marched peacefully, police clashed with stone-throwing youths in the first test for the new crisis coalition. The clashes came just one day after the government cleared its first hurdle by overwhelmingly winning a vote of confidence.