Greek English language newspaper ekathimerini publishes this today, on the same day that Athenians take to the streets in riots.
Firms Owe Billions in Taxes and Loans
The total amount owed by entrepreneurs and the self-employed to the state, social security funds and banks is 194 billion euros, just short of the country’s gross domestic product, according to data compiled by the National Confederation of Greek Commerce (ESEE).
Of that total, about 44 percent, or almost 85 billion euros, comprises overdue debts. This huge amount cannot simply be explained away by the economic crisis, but it is obvious that the dramatic drop in turnover, the rise in extraordinary taxes and reduced access to bank loans due to the dire financial situation have exacerbated the problem.
The ESEE data show that the total debt comprises 41.1 billion euros owed to the tax authorities, 4.3 billion euros to the fund for self-employed professionals, OAEE, and 11.5 billion euros to the Social Security Fund (IKA), while expired debts to banks come to 28 billion euros.
For 2012, the sum of the enterprises’ obligations is estimated at 104 billion euros, half of which concerns taxes due.
UK Telegraph photo of Greek riot police pushing protestors in Athens.