The Eurogroup meeting held in Brussels on Thursday issued the following statement on Greece and on its talks with its lenders:
“The institutions briefed the Eurogroup on the second review of the economic adjustment programme, following their review mission to Athens in December.
The Eurogroup urged the Greek authorities and the institutions to swiftly resume negotiations to agree on a policy reform package shared by all stakeholders. Such an agreement is a condition for the successful conclusion of the second review.
The reforms concern Greece’s labour and product markets, its energy sector and other areas. An agreement on Greece’s medium-term fiscal strategy, i.e. in 2018 and beyond, is also expected.
The European Stability Mechanism (ESM), which is providing the financing for the programme, informed ministers about progress made in implementing the short-term debt relief measures for Greece. These measures were endorsed by the Eurogroup in December and formally adopted by the ESM and EFSF (European Financial Stability Facility) boards of directors on 23 January 2017.
The measures aim to reduce interest rate risk for Greece, including by changing some debt rates from floating to fixed, and to make the burden of debt repayment easier. They do not have any budgetary implications for the ESM shareholders, which are the euro area member states.”