BoG Gov. Stournaras from Berlin: Stay the course on reforms, obligations to creditors

4 December 2018
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Bank of Greece (BoG) Gov. Yannis Stournaras on Monday emphasized – from Berlin, no less – that reforms in thrice-bailed out Greece must continue, while again warning that Athens’ obligations to creditors should be fulfilled.

Greece’s influential central banker, a one-time finance minister in the coalition government that preceded the mostly leftist Tsipras government now in power, said reforms and implementation of “prior actions” are a prerequisite for economic recovery as well as to ensure that ballooning external Greek debt can be rendered sustainable.

Stournaras has been a pesky “thorn in the side” of the current leftist-rightist government, with a handful of top ministers in the first months 2015 taking “pot shots” at the independent BoG governor, including demands that he resign from his post at the helm of the central bank.

His oft-repeated insistence on reforms, fiscal discipline and rebuilding the Greek state’s credibility on Monday came with Energy Minister Giorgos Stathakis in attendance at the Berlin conference.

Referring to the major “headache” plaguing Greece’s credit system, he said domestic banks’ capitalization and liquidity have significantly improved, while several “tools” can now be used to reduce a “mountain” of NPLs burdening their balance sheets.

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