Monday, November 29, 1999

Greece on track with reforms, IMF, EU, ECB say

News posted by

Greece seems on track with budget cuts and economic reforms demanded as part of a bailout to rescue the debt-laden nation from bankruptcy, a team from the European Union, IMF and European Central Bank said on Thursday.The joint team said a three-day interim review showed that Athens was holding firm controls on spending and that the budget deficit was smaller than projected at the end of May, although full data beyond the central government were not yet available."While the mission did not undertake a comprehensive review at this time, its discussions suggest that the programme is on track and that the policies are being implemented as agreed," the joint EU, ECB, IMF statement said."Fiscal developments are positive with central government revenues coming in closely as expected and with firm expenditure control in the state budget."The delegation visited Athens to check on the country's progress in meeting the terms of a 3-year, 110-billion euro ($134.9 billion) bailout plan.It will return for a full review at the end of July to receive information on budget developments in the wider public sector, such as state-run pension funds and local government, which are necessary to obtain a full picture, it said.The IMF, EU and the ECB will review Greek progress every three months to approve successive aid tranches, enabling the debt-laden country to roll over expiring debt.The delegation has to complete its first review of Greek progress by Aug. 30 for the country to receive 9 billion euros of aid. Greece last month received a first payment of 20 billion euros."The preliminary assessment suggests that when we come back...we will find that the programme is on track," Poul Thomsen, IMF mission chief for Greece, told a news conference."There is still too much inflation," he said. Greek inflation was running at 13-year high of 5.4 percent a year in May, partly boosted by tax increases to shore up the deficit.Talks to complete pension reforms were well advanced and other reforms on the labour market and privatisations were also progressing, the statement said.(Reporting by Ingrid Melander and Harry Papachristou, editing by Alister Doyle; Editing by Toby Chopra)
News posted by
Click here to read more news from
Please follow our blogs



No comments:

Post a Comment