Timeline

2004 August – Athens hosts Olympic Games.

2004 December – European Commission issues formal warning after Greece found to have falsified budget deficit data in run-up to joining eurozone.

2005 March – Trade unions launch 24-hour strikes in protest at rising unemployment and high inflation.

2005 April – Parliament ratifies EU constitution.

2005 December – Amid protest strikes by transport workers, parliament approves changes to labour laws, including an end to jobs for life in the public sector. The plans sparked industrial action in June.

2006 March – Public sector workers strike over pay and in protest at government plans to scrap job security laws and intensify privatisation.

2006 May – Greek and Turkish fighter planes crash into the Aegean after colliding in mid-air.

2006 September – Greece, Russia and Bulgaria back a long-awaited deal to build an oil pipeline which will carry Russian oil to Europe via Alexandropoulis in Greece.

2007 January – A left-wing guerrilla group claims responsibility for firing a rocket at the US embassy in Athens. No-one is injured in the attack.

2007 February – The conservative government survives a no-confidence vote and promises to forge ahead with reforms.

2007 August – Government, seeking a fresh mandate for its reforms, sets date for early elections at 16 September

2007 September – Despite criticism of his government’s handling of the fires, Prime Minister Karamanlis wins a narrow majority in the poll. He says he now has a mandate for more reforms but also pledges to make national unity a priority.

2008 March – Greece blocks Macedonia’s bid to join Nato because of unresolved dispute over former Yugoslav republic’s name.

Parliament narrowly passes government’s controversial pension reform bill in face of general public sector strike and mass protests.

2008 October – Hundreds of thousands of public-sector employees and professionals go on strike in protest at privatisation, pay ceilings and pension reform.

2008 December – Students and young people take to city streets in nationwide protests and riots over the police killing of a 15-year-old boy in Athens. Major public-sector strikes coincide to increase pressure on the government over its economic policies.

2009 August – Around 10,000 people are evacuated from their homes as wildfires sweep across the country.

2009 October – Opposition Pasok socialist party wins snap election called by PM Karamanlis and leader George Papandreou takes over as new prime minister.

Debt crisis

2009 December – Clashes break out in Athens on the first anniversary of the killing of a teenager by police.

2009 BUDGET CRISIS
Protest in Athens against government austerity measures in February 2010
Greece’s 300bn-euro debt plunged the country into crisis in 2009

Greece’s credit rating is downgraded by one of world’s three leading rating agencies amid fears the government could default on its ballooning debt. PM George Papandreou announces programme of tough public spending cuts.

2010 January – Government announces second round of tough austerity measures, including public sector pay cuts, fuel increases, and a crackdown on tax evasion.

2010 February – EU leaders pledge to help Greece tackle its debt crisis, but fail to come up with concrete proposals.

Government austerity measures prompt series of general strikes and protests that continue into March.

2010 March – PM George Papandreou likens budget crisis to “wartime situation”, announces third round of tax rises and spending cuts totalling $6.5bn.

Bailout package

2010 April/May – Fears of a possible default on Greece’s debts prompt eurozone countries to approve a $145bn (110bn euros; £91bn) rescue package for the country. As part of the bailout deal, PM Papandreou announces a round of even more stringent austerity measures. Trade unions call a general strike in protest.

2010 August – European Commission says Greece has met conditions set for it to receive second tranche of EU/IMF bailout loan.

2010 October – Government announces new, tougher, austerity measures in 2011 draft budget. Measures include new taxes and higher rate of VAT.

2010 November – EU and IMF approve third tranche of rescue funding for Greece.

2011 February – International lenders say austerity measures so far implemented do not go far enough, and that Greece must speed up reforms to get its finances back on track.

2011 June – 24-hour general strike. Tens of thousands of protesters march on parliament to oppose government efforts to pass new austerity laws.

Crisis deepens

2011 July – European Union leaders agree a major bailout for Greece over its debt crisis by channelling 109bn euros through the European Financial Stability Facility.

All three main credit ratings agencies cut Greece’s rating to a level associated with a substantial risk of default.

2011 August – European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet urges eurozone governments rapidly to implement the 21 July agreement on a second bailout.

2011 September – Credit rating agency Moody’s downgrades eight Greek banks due to concerns over Greece’s ability to pay back its debts.

Parliament adopts unpopular new property tax in effort to bring down budget deficit and secure continuing support from international creditors.

2011 October – Eurozone leaders agree a 50% debt write-off for Greece. Greek government casts the deal into doubt by announcing a referendum on it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.