Finance Minister Makis Keravnos said on Friday he is “in favour of targeted measures to help mostly vulnerable groups from the wave of rising costs and inflation.”

He made the comments following a meeting with trade union Peo and added that he “would not rule out other possibilities”.

He said he could not reveal which measures and scenarios exactly the government is currently considering but said they would be announced in due course.

“We are at an advanced stage, and we are studying all the plans and ways of dealing with problems and the cost of living,” he said, adding that the government will “not be dogmatic” in dealing with the problems.

Additionally, he said his ministry is advocating targeted measures towards specific groups of society, “because, in our opinion, targeted measures can help more and go deeper where they need to but without excluding other possibilities”.

He added that his first priority is “to keep the economy on the path of growth so we can meet the European Union’s demands”.

Despite Keravnos’ reassurances, Peo’s secretary general Sotiroulla Charlambous appeared less than convinced following the meeting.

She said inflation, high prices, and rising interest rates “create a very dangerous cocktail for society”.

“I think it is also a common finding that those who are most burdened by this situation are low- and middle-income people and vulnerable groups of workers,” she added.

She said, “the message we gave to the minister, and I wish to repeat it here, is that there needs to be effective measures against high prices and support of households right here and right now.”

“Waiting for the ideal because we here too much talk about the ‘targeted measures’ may end up meaning [they are implemented] too late,” she added.

She also delved into specifics regarding her suggestions, calling for the reinstatement of fuel and electricity subsidies, as well as for the inclusion of low-income pensioners in the special electricity subsidy.

Additionally, she called for higher taxes on banks’ profits and the use of the proceeds to implement a plan to subsidise mortgages for low- and middle-income people who wish to buy houses.

Peo also submitted to Keravnos a memorandum which requests the abolition of the “double taxation” on fuel – in other words to remove the VAT which is charged on top of the fuel usage tax.

They also called for a one-off payment to be made to low-income pensioners as a compensatory measure for price increases, and for an increase in the minimum wage to bring it into line with inflation experienced since 2014.