Business World

Monday 19 March 2018

Debt Crisis: Greece staying in eurozone is the only scenario – European Central Bank reporters

THE European Central Bank has said that Greece must stay in the eurozone and that is the only scenario it is working on.

Executive board member Joerg Asmussen told a conference in Germany that this is the ECB’s preference as “plan A.”

''That's the Plan A, that's what we're working on," he said.

When asked whether there was a plan B, he added: “There's already been criticism that there is none. But as soon as you start talking about 'plan B' or 'plan C' then 'plan A' is automatically thrown out of the window."

Greeks go to the polls again on June 17 after inconclusive elections on May 6 and the electorate has been warned that if it does not vote to comply with tough austerity measures as part of its EU/IMF/ECB bailout terms, it will have to face potential expulsion from the euro area.

The fragile situation in Greece also dominated G8 talks at the weekend.

Mr Asmussen also said that the ECB remains opposed to any easing of tough fiscal rules agreed by EU leaders earlier this year.

The fiscal pact "must not be renegotiated or watered down," he said but conceded that a package of growth measures could also be considered. Mr Asmussen added.

"No-one in Europe is opposed to growth," he said.

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