IMF tough message to Greece-EU: Reforms now, or we are out

24 February 2017
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Following the harsh positions expressed by IMF officials on the Fund’s blog after the statements made by CEO Christine Lagarde on german TV, which essentially amounted to an ultimatum to Greece and its European creditor-partners that it would only participate in the program if a debt relief and lower primary surpluses were guaranteed, its representative in the Troika Delia Velclescu is expected to adopt a tough stance in the upcoming round of talks in Athens. The IMF echoed earlier statements by the US’s new Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin who said Greece was a European problem. It is apparent that the new Trump administration is giving the green light to the IMF to adopt a harsh position on the matter. Meanwhile, Greek PM Alexis Tsipras reportedly had a phone contact with Christine Lagarde with the latter disagreeing for a political solution to the Greek issue. The IMF believes the Europeans’ indecisiveness jeopardises the credibility of the program, stressing that this in turn adversely affects the political support of the program.

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