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The chapter examines the cases of three Mediterranean countries: Cyprus, Portugal, and Spain. It asks the question how these countries succeeded in avoiding the fate of Greece despite sharing many similarities with its model of capitalism. The key explanation appears to be a shared elite commitment to the implementation of the bailout program even though the three countries faced a very different set of conditions due to their different negotiating power. In all three cases, public trust in the elite collapsed, but mainstream parties succeeded in preventing populist challengers taking over the government. However, following the exit from the program, reform fatigue set in indicating the limits of elite-driven reforms during a period of crisis.
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The size of these companies is not necessarily the cause for their low level of productivity. As shown by Farkas ( 2016: 211), there is significant heterogeneity in the EU about the difference in productivity between large companies and SMEs. For example, in Denmark or the United Kingdom, there is barely any difference in productivity across small, medium and large enterprises. However, in countries, which are characterized by a large number of foreign multinationals and/or the presence of a large black economy, the difference in productivity between SMEs and large companies is sizable. A more extensive discussion of SMEs is outside the scope of the chapter. ILO ( 2015) provides a comprehensive overview about the sector’s role in job creation and productivity.
These values are considerably lower than the Greek 47.1 percent—as it was discussed in the previous chapter, the state expanded there rapidly in the 1980s. Data: European Commission ( 2017): 158.
The European Innovation Scoreboard aims to provide a comprehensive assessment of innovation performance by EU member states. Its rankings are available: http://ec.europa.eu/growth/industry/innovation/facts-figures/scoreboards_en. Accessed: 2 July 2017.
The precise share of Russian money varies by source—while Moody’s estimates €31 billion out of 88, the Bank of Cyprus estimate is just €6.5–13 billion (Kalotay 2013).
Data: European Commission ( 2017) 48.
Data: European Commission ( 2017) 164 and 160.
Orphanides ( 2014: 19–22) provides an extensive discussion about the communication between the ECB and the Cyprian authorities about consolidation measures and the possibility of waiving collateral eligibility rules.
See the Reuters report at: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-eurozone-cyprus-stumbled-insight-idUSBRE92H0RH20130318. Accessed: 2 July 2017.
Eurogroup statement on Spain. Available: http://www.consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cms_data/docs/pressdata/en/ecofin/130778.pdf. Accessed: 2 July 2017.
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There were eight reviews in total for the Cyprus bailout program. These reports are available at the website of the DG Economic and Financial Affairs: http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/assistance_eu_ms/cyprus/index_en.htm. All the reviews have a one-page summary of compliance performance.
See the interview with Klaus Regling (EMS Managing Director) at https://www.esm.europa.eu/interviews/klaus-regling-interview-el-mundo-spain. Accessed: 2 July 2017.
Data: European Commission ( 2017): 164.
Data: European Commission ( 2017): 14.
According to COFOG data between 2010 and 2014 education spending decreased in Cyprus from 6.2 percent to 5.8 percent, in Portugal from 7.6 percent to 6.2 percent, in Spain from 4.5 percent to 4.1 percent of GDP.
According to World Bank Databank, woman participation in the labor force declined between 2010 and 2014 from 57.1 percent to 56.2 percent in Cyprus and from 56.3 percent to 54.9 percent in Portugal, and grew from 51.4 percent to 52.5 percent in Spain—still a very low number. While male labor force participation also decreased, it is over 65 percent in all three countries.
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- The Collapse and Reform of the Mediterranean Social Model in Cyprus, Portugal, and Spain
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