Crisis News: The IMF, supported by the City of London and the European Union, have thrown Greece a lifeline today by proposing a new scheme to float the country far enough out into Mediterranean for it to qualify as an ‘offshore tax haven’.
“We are fed up with 50p tax rate as it is,” said the British Banking Authority’s Angela Knight.
“Having Greece as a tax haven – somewhere we can put all our money that is closer than the Cayman Islands, has more space than the Bahamas and better food than Jersey – makes perfect sense.”
“Besides, the financial culture required for a tax haven is effectively already in place: no-one pays any taxes.”
Unable to convince the IMF or the European Union inspectors that they could shrink the public sector in a way that would reassure the markets and avoid bloody revolution, Greek Prime Minister George Papendreou has backed the new scheme, saying, “pass me the ouzo”.
“I have finally realised that, unlike the banks, Greece will not be bailed out by ordinary taxpayers and then be allowed to continue taking the piss and get huge rewards for failure.”
“By becoming an offshore tax haven, Greece will get many benefits.”
“Firstly, the international banking system has said that if they can stash all their profits with us and pay no tax, they will forget about our debts. Win-win. Bosh.”
“Secondly, we will get a long stretch of lovely new beaches where the borders with Albania, Bulgaria, Turkey and Macedonia used to be.”
“Not only will this regenerate our economy with a sudden, massive expansion of the tourism industry, but several kilometres of water between us and our neighbours will come as a great relief: Bulgaria makes too much noise and Albania stinks.”
Story: Jasper Gibson + Nick Tolson
Image: Iain Armstrong