Greece must complete prior actions before Eurogroup

4 November 2015
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The government must complete the first batch of prior actions in the next few days and before the Eurogroup meeting next Monday to open the way for the second batch of prior actions that will allow the disbursement of the 2-billion-euro loan tranche, European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Pierre Moscovici said on Tuesday, following a meeting with Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos in Athens.

Speaking to the press after the meeting with Tsakalotos, Moscovici also warned that if the 3-4 pending issues from the first batch are not resolved, “an agreement at the Eurogroup will be more difficult”.

He said that Greece must “take one step at a time” and that the debt issue will be discussed in due time, but noted that any solution must be “governed by ambition and pragmatism and be politically acceptable by [Greece’s] partners”. He also said the European Commission, the IMF and the ECB will all table proposals on the issue.

Despite persistent questions, Moscovici didn’t respond on whether the country’s program review will be seen separately from the bank recapitalization, but simply noted the need for a strong financial system, viable banks and protection of bank deposits.
Remaining on the issue of the country’s debt, Tsakalotos said he’s optimistic that talks will start before Christmas and that Greece will not wait until the completion of the program review to present its proposals, as a team at the ministry is already working on them. He said if both sides show good faith, there could be many technical solutions to the problem.

The minister also clarified that “the institutions must understand that Greece is “a special case and that there are things that can be done during a recession and things that cannot,” and went on to note that the government has drawn up a clear roadmap that includes bank recapitalization, the completion of the review and the debate on the debt.

In joint statements before the their meeting, Moscovici spoke of the possibility of building a new success story for Greece noting that the country must stay in the Eurozone and thrive in it.

Earlier, the Commissioner met with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras at his office at Maximos Mansion.

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