International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said the struggling euro area member Greece requires two more years to meet its budget targets and should be brought back to its feet.
"This is what we advocated for Portugal, this is what we advocated for Spain, and this is what we are advocating for Greece, where I said repeatedly that an additional two years was necessary for the country to actually face the fiscal consolidation program that is considered," Lagarde said on Thursday at a news conference ahead of the IMF-World Bank annual meetings in Tokyo.
Earlier this week, Greek Finance Minister Yiannis Stournaras told reporters that he hopes the creditors will give Greece an additional two years to meet its budget targets at an estimated cost of EUR 12 billion.
The Eurogroup meeting on Monday granted ten days to Greece to fulfill the reform pledges before deciding on the next loan tranche of EUR 31.5 billion.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on her visit to Greece on Tuesday said the country had made significant progress in dealing with its huge debt but that it was a "difficult path."
Meanwhile, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said on Tuesday that Greece has made 'perceptible and significant' progress in undertaking policy reforms, but needs to do more.
Greece's debt needs to be addressed so as to put the economy back on its feet, IMF chief said today. The European Commission, the ECB and the IMF, is preparing a report on the progress made by the Greek government in meeting its fiscal targets.
Further, Lagarde said the U.S. and euro area countries should take urgent and courageous steps to boost the global economy, which is being weighed down by uncertainty about whether policymakers will deliver on policy commitments.
"We need action to lift the veil of uncertainty," she said. The economic uncertainty is preventing policy makers from investing and creating jobs. IMF chief called for courageous and co-operative action to secure recovery.
Lagarde noted that economic crisis in advanced economies started to hurt growth in emerging economies. In order to anchor the global recovery, she suggested to focus on creating the conditions for growth that is more inclusive and to create jobs.
by RTT Staff Writer
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