Commissioner Moscovici: There is good progress but there is still work to be done

We are into the final stretch for the conclusion of the Greek programme, stated European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Pierre Moscovici upon his arrival at the Eurogroup meeting in Sofia on Friday.

Moscovici said that Friday’s Eurogroup is important for the Greek issue because it will prepare the ground for the overall decisions that must “ideally” be reached at the Eurogroup on June 21 in Luxembourg.

The European Commissioner pointed out the four main parameters for the conclusion of the programme. Firstly, he noted, there was the conclusion of the fourth review and last review. “There is good progress but there is still work to be done,” said Moscovici, adding that the results in the fiscal sector are good, particularly regarding the primary surplus and the return to growth of the Greek economy.

Secondly, the euro area finance ministers must discuss the planning of the post-programme surveillance for Greece, which will ensure that the reforms will carry on. “We want Greece to become a normal member of the eurozone with full access to the markets and full rights,” said Moscovici.

The third point of the discussion will be the strategy for the growth of the Greek economy in the next years, which Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos will present at the Eurogroup meeting. The growth strategy must have the complete ownership of the Greek goverment,” Moscovici clarified.

Finally, the eurozone ministers will discuss Greek debt relief. “We must find the mechanism that will relieve the economy from the burden of the debt,” said Moscovici, noting that there are many interesting proposals on the negotiations’ table, including the so-called “French proposal” that links debt relief with the growth rate.

“I am optimistic because we have covered a great distance and made big progress,” he concluded.