Kyriakos Mitsotakis in his regular posting on the internet with the weekly report of government work refers to the opening of the platform for the Youth Pass, the increase of the Minimum Guaranteed Income, the opening of a modern waste treatment plant, the new, smart meters of DEDDIE, the new employment program of the DYPA, in the Elefsina Shipyards, in the progress in the battle against punctuality, in the aid to the flood victims and in the control program of the public infrastructures in our country.

It is now over a year that we meet here almost every Sunday. When I started this “experiment” (that’s what I thought of it at first), I was very encouraged by the fact that, despite the size of the text, this post got a response. You were not discouraged by the fact that it is long, nor that it has a wide range of topics – which many times may not directly concern you. And I want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to communicate with you the result of our work and policy”, the Prime Minister initially notes.

“No, today’s review isn’t an ‘anniversary’ one (I don’t remember what day the first such post was anyway!), it’s a regular, as usual content-rich, weekly review,” he continues.

For Youth Pass whose platform was launched last Thursday, Mr. Mitsotakis recalls that he had announced it in May, during the pre-election period.

“And the truth is that he became the target of malicious comments, as the political debate was then very tense (as it always is in pre-election periods). But what is the Youth Pass? It is nothing more than a digital card worth 150 euros that all our 18 and 19 year olds receive. This card can be used for specific cultural, tourism and transport activities and services. Thus, we give a little help to young children to live creative experiences and create beautiful memories, but at the same time, we strengthen the Greek economy, since this money will be spent on domestic services. Already within a few days 25,000 applications have been submitted, and of course the platform remains open for those who have not yet applied. The aid will be given by mid-December at the latest. This was one of the measures I had announced before the election and which is now being implemented”, he points out.

And he continues: “Another is the 8% increase in the Minimum Guaranteed Income. So this week the Joint Ministerial Decision was signed which makes this a reality. This means that for all applications approved from December 1, the amounts will be increased, and will now reach 216 euros per month for a one-person household, 108 euros for each additional adult member and 54 euros for each minor member. In addition to the amounts, however, the number of beneficiaries is also increasing, as we have increased the minimum six-monthly income required to receive the Minimum Guaranteed Income – from 5,400 euros to 5,832 euros.”

Speaking about environmental protection, the prime minister refers to the opening on Wednesday of the most modern waste treatment plant in the country, in Paleochuni of Arcadia, which will provide a solution to the huge problem that plagued the Peloponnese Region for over 30 years.

“At the same time, this project will provide clean, cheap energy, but also create new markets for recyclable materials. In full operation, it will generate twice as much energy as it consumes!

To get to this point of the inauguration though, let me briefly tell you what has come before. Because it is worth saying that this project was stagnant, and we almost lost European funds amounting to 65 million euros. After a persistent effort, we managed not to be included in the community funds, and thus this investment with a total budget of 135 million euros will be completed with a PPP. Thus, the Peloponnese will be one of the first regions of the country that will manage to reduce the waste that leads to burial, to a percentage below 10% in 2030!

As a country, we had fallen unforgivably behind in waste management. In 2019, Greece had only 3 waste treatment plants in operation and another 5 under construction. Today, 11 are in operation and another 16 are under construction. My goal in the new four-year period is to increase recycling rates to the levels set by the EU,” he adds.

Mr. Mitsotakis also refers to his new smart meters DEDDEE, a project with a total budget of 1.2 billion. euro.

“Last Tuesday, a financing agreement for this project was signed between DEDDIE and the European Investment Bank, amounting to 150 million euros. These funds will be allocated to the first phase of the replacement of the old meters. What is this project though, you might be wondering. It is about the installation of 7.3 million new smart electricity meters, which will be completed in 2030, but already by the end of next year, 55% of electricity consumption will be calculated through smart meters. These new meters will, among other things, give consumers real-time information and help save energy and of course resources.”

In the field of employment, Mr. Mitsotakis recalls the very encouraging data he reported last Sunday which show a decrease in unemployment among the 15-24 age group.

“It fell if you remember to 19.4%, which is the lowest youth unemployment rate recorded since statistics have been available. And yes, it is extremely positive, but today I want to tell you that we also take care of the older ages.

With a new program of hers DOUBLE we are now creating 21,500 full-time jobs for the unemployed aged 55 to 67 and the unemployed over 67 to 74 who have not established a pension right. The duration of the program is 12 months, with the possibility of extension for another 12 months, and 75% of the salary and insurance contributions up to 750 euros per month will be subsidized. Because we want to move forward together – and not leave anyone behind!”, he emphasizes.

And he adds: “However, for years, the workers at the Elefsina Shipyards were unfortunately left behind. The shipyards were deserted, the debts were high, the workers were unpaid. After much effort and persistent work, we have managed to change this sad image, and now the Elefsina Shipyards have come back to life, with more than 40 ships repaired there in just one year! But this week we had a big milestone: the signing of a financing agreement for the Elefsina Shipyards by an American development financing organization in the amount of 125 million euros. ONEX’s plan is to invest a total of 500 million euros, 300 of which will be invested in infrastructure. The future for the Greek shipbuilding industry looks really optimistic. And today no one can say that we have left the workers behind. As no one can dispute that we have left behind us only the images of the abandonment of such an important industry for Greece”.

It also refers to the bill that was passed by the Parliament and concerns the prevention of the spread of terrorist content via the Internet.

“A real and extremely serious danger for citizens and our society, especially in times like the one we are going through. What does this Bill provide? Briefly, it incorporates arrangements from European directives, regulations and EU decisions, with the aim of tackling the misuse of social media and the so-called “dark web” by terrorists to propagate, recruit and incite extremists. -murderous acts”, he points out.

The prime minister also refers to the government’s efforts to prevent punctuality. “I guess you’ve heard of the Permanent Price Reduction program, I’ve written about it in previous Sunday posts. Today I want to inform you that 644 products from 35 main categories (fresh milk, detergents, jams, sugar, cereals, yogurt, cold cuts, rice) have already been included in the program and new ones are constantly being added. As I told you last week, our goal is for codes to reach 1,000. And I believe we will succeed, as more than 50 companies rushed to respond, demonstrating a sense of social responsibility. At the same time, we are extending until the end of 2023 the ceiling on the profit margin on basic necessities for the ‘Household Basket’,” he underlines.

At the same time, it informs about measures to support farmers us in Thessaly and Evros that were “hit” by the bad weather Daniel and the fires: “The compensations – which are irrevocable for everyone – will also be given to those who were not obliged to be insured by ELGA. The first advances for the loss of livestock, amounting to 16.5 million euros, have already been credited to the accounts of 2,035 livestock farmers and beekeepers in the two regions. We also activate where necessary and targeted measures, such as the arrangement for a long grace period (2+5 years) of repayment with zero interest rate of liabilities from the rural stream. Cumulatively to date – to give you an idea – 100 million euros have been paid to 26,925 applicants from Thessaly and regions of Central Greece”.

Additionally, it makes reference to the mandatory pre-seismic inspection of the country’s public infrastructure with an emphasis on the buildings that house schools, hospitals, universities, police stations and fire stations.

“I want to emphasize that this is the first time that a specific framework of immediate pre-earthquake control has been established with mandatory implementation and we have secured the amount of 32.5 million euros from the Recovery and Resilience Fund for the implementation of the project.”

In closing, he congratulates the runners taking part in the Authentic Athens Marathon: “But I also want to congratulate the 70,000 runners – Greek and foreign – who are taking part in the 40th Authentic Athens Marathon this year and wish them strength and endurance to reach the goal. Have a lovely Sunday everyone, and thank you for your time!’