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People wait outside a Greek Manpower Employment Organisation (OAED) office in an Athens suburb December 11, 2013.
People wait outside a Greek Manpower Employment Organisation (OAED) office in an Athens suburb December 11, 2013.
(John Kolesidis/Reuters)

Greece achieves a budget surplus. Now, how about jobs?

Round up the bouzouki players and start the celebrations. The embattled Greek government is well on its way to its first annual primary budget surplus in a decade, after producing a positive number of €2.67- billion ($3.91-billion) for the first 11 months of this year.

Sure, more than half the total comes from bond profits returned by euro zone central banks, and the figure doesn’t take into account the government’s outlays to meet interest payments on its mountain of outstanding debt. But it shows that the state’s tax take has now climbed higher than its program spending, which is an important milestone.