Moscovici: I’m confident that we can have a very positive meeting of the Eurogroup

The Eurogroup meeting will be “very positive” and could allow the return of the mission chiefs in Athens, the EU financial affairs chief Pierre Moscovici said as he arrived for the Eurogroup meeting in Brussels on Monday, adding that a lot of progress has been made in the last few weeks.

“I’m confident that we can have a very positive meeting of the Eurogroup today. It has been well-prepared,” Moscovici told journalists.

“Greece has already made very good progress. Growth is back in Greece, the fiscal targets have been overachieved but of course there’s a lot on unemployment. That’s why we have a duty to move on. I expect that the discussion today will be of high quality and then that we can have the mission chiefs and the missions returning to Athens as soon as possible to move to a global deal concluding the second [program] review and opening for a full success of a program,” he added, noting that “full success” means growth coming back to Greece in a sustainable manner.

Asked if June is the new deadline for Greece and its creditors to achieve an agreement due to the country’s debt repayments, he said:

“If we decide today with an agreement on the parameters which are necessary that the missions return to Athens, which I hope, I think possible [and] necessary, then it will mean we’re really on the right track. That we’re making huge progress even if a lot of work will have to be done on the ground in Athens to conclude the review, let’s not forget that.”

“There’s no question of the IMF jumping ship. When I speak of the institutions returning to Greece I mean all the institutions that will return […] We need all the institutions there so that we have a solid program that includes everyone. Of course the IMF will be onboard. Must be onboard, and I’m confident the IMF will be onboard. The IMF is a very important partner that gives security and confidence in the program,” he said.