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Greece's 'Plan B'

Monday, May 20, 2013 - 01:59

May 20 - Investors may not be worrying quite so much about Greece at the moment but a new political party could change that. The Plan B party supports leaving the euro and returning to the drachma. Hayley Platt asks whether it's likely to do any harm to the country's recovery.

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It doesn't have widespread support yet but Greece's new Plan B party is being seen as a threat by some. It was launched at the weekend and favours a return to the drachma. Investors may be showing a little interest in Greece once again. But party founder Alekos Alavanos says the country can't emerge from almost six years of recession until it leaves the euro. (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) FOUNDER OF 'PLAN B' PARTY, ALEKOS ALAVANOS, SAYING: "The experience that we have from all the international recession crises is that no country has managed to come out of recession with an 'expensive' currency that is also used by a great economic power such as Germany. We need a currency that's competitive, to ease exports and to boost the internal market." Overall Greeks support staying in the euro but they're not all happy it. A recent poll suggested 43 percent had a negative view of the currency and 55 percent had a negative view of the European Union. Plan B is hoping to build on that and win support from those struggling to make ends meet. Record high unemployment, wage freezes and tax increases are hurting many. Adam Cole from RBC Capital Markets says there could be trouble ahead. SOUNDBITE: Adam Cole, RBC Capital Markets, saying (English): "Questions I think will be raised again in the future once we get the otherside of the German elections. It's likely that Greece may well need another debt restructuring of some sort involving the public sector holders so I think we're in a temporary period where Greece has gone relatively quiet but I think if you can look six months into the future it's not likely to stay that way." And Alavanos isn't the only politician making a pro-drachma stand. The former brother-in-law of ex-prime Minister George Papandreous also plans to start a pro-drachma party. With the Syriza party - which favours the euro but is anti-austerity - also garnering support it seems the current relative calm in Greece could be about to be tested.

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Greece's 'Plan B'

Monday, May 20, 2013 - 01:59