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Eurogroup Sends Strict Message to Greece: Proceed With Reforms

EUROGROUPPP_545_355 “It is time to make progress in the program” is Eurogroup‘s clear and strict message to Athens, which -under the suffocating pressure of its creditors- is expected to launch consultations with the technical levels of the three institutions (the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund) in Brussels on Wednesday, March 11, as confirmed both by Greek government and European Union sources.
The same government officials said that the process of technical consultations begins immediately and intensively, while they ruled out the possibility of institutions’ representatives traveling to Athens. Moreover, they noted that the Eurogroup demonstrated its willingness to meet Greece’s financing needs if it is necessary.
The Greek issue has occupied the meeting of Eurozone’s Finance Ministers for about half an hour, while according to European sources, there will be a joint communique on the developments, as no statements were made by the institutions’ officials after the meeting concluded. The single currency Finance Ministers’ statements prior to the meeting have led the developments, indicating that the Eurogroup’s main demand from Athens is to accelerate the specialization of the reforms program and start the negotiations with the institutions. On his behalf, Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem has emphasized that “no more time should be wasted.”
The Greek proposal to enrich the reforms list submitted by the country’s Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis, seemed to be positively assessed by the European partners. There will be three additional reforms, aiming at tax collection and combating tax evasion. “These reforms, along with dozens of others, will be part of the National Plan for Reconstruction and Growth that the government will present by April,” Greek government sources indicated.

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