Saturday 25 March 2017

France’s Sarkozy says Greece should never have been let into the euro

French president Nicolas Sarkozy has said the EU should not have allowed Greece to enter the single European currency
French president Nicolas Sarkozy has said the EU should not have allowed Greece to enter the single European currency

INDEPENDENT.IE REPORTERS

FRENCH president Nicolas Sarkozy has said the EU should not have allowed Greece to enter the single European currency.

In an interview on French television about the new eurozone plan agreed on Wednesday, whereby Greek debt will be written off to the tune of 50pc while the area’s bailout fund will be increased to €1 trillion, Mr Sarkozy said "It was an error because Greece entered with false [economic] figures... it was not ready."



He also compared Greece's sovereign debt crisis to the crisis at Lehman Brothers, and said that a failure to come up with a solution would have thrown the euro zone and world economy into disorder.



"If Greece had gone bankrupt, there would have been a domino effect that would have affected everybody. The entire euro zone risked being taken down," Sarkozy said.



Meanwhile, Chinese politicians said they are waiting for details of how the new plan will work before investing in the euro zone bail-out fund.



"We need to wait for the technicalities to be clear and also to carry out serious studies before we can decide on investment," vice finance minister Zhu Guangyao said.



He made the remarks as Klaus Regling, head of the bail-out fund, held talks with China's central bank and finance ministry a day after European leaders reached a last-ditch agreement to tackle the region's worst crisis in decades.



Mr Regling talked down any immediate investment.



Expectations for a strong commitment from China had been high ahead of Mr Regling's visit to Beijing.



The Financial Times quoted a source saying a cash injection into the fund could top €70.5bn.



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