The Greek recovery (whose GDP recently plunged to year 2000 levels) is progressing as expected, however following the latest news out of the Fourth world country that its national broadcaster ERT, with 2800 employees, will be shut down, it may no longer be televized. There is hope though: following its shutdown, it will be reopened... eventually... following a substantial downsizing. It is not clear why ERT had to be shutdown just to fire a few hundred people, although union rules are likely implicated. It is also not clear how long until the process is completed. What is clear is that the local workers are unhappy and have already resorted to that favorite Greek pastime: protesting. But at least they have the Euro.
Sources said that Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has already taken the decision to pull the plug on the broadcaster in its current form and the government has started drawing up the relevant legislation.
ERT currently employees 2,800 people. It is not clear how many employees will remain but sources indicated it would be a fraction of those in work at the moment.
Greece has to fire 2,000 civil servants by the end of the year and 15,000 by the end of 2014.
Those leaving will do so either via voluntary redundancy, early retirement or dismissal.
It is not clear how this will affect ERT’s various services, including TV and radio stations. It is also not clear how quickly the process could be carried out.
A legislative decree was published in the Government Gazette that allows for public enterprises to be restructured in this way.
Junior coalition partner Democratic Left said in a statement on Tuesday that it would be “inconceivable” for Greece not to have a national broadcaster.
"You keep using that word... I don't think it means what you think it means."