Stournaras optimistic on review
Bank of Greece Governor Yannis Stournaras yesterday appeared confident the government is close to wrapping up a bailout review with the country’s creditors that will pave the way for debt talks, adding that he expected to see “white smoke” from a December 5 Eurogroup meeting.
“The worst is behind us,” Stournaras told Bloomberg in a television interview. “The agenda on Greece is now fixed and economic developments in Greece are rather better than expected both on the macro side and the fiscal side.”
The country’s central banker and former finance minister said he is not concerned about the pos- sible effect of a referendum in Italy on a constitutional review the day before a crucial December 5 Eurogroup meeting – the last of the year and where eurozone finance ministers are expected to assess Greece’s progress and possibly initiate talks for debt relief.
Stournaras did, however, say that he would welcome a decision before the new year, which is expected to be a tense one for the bloc as elections loom in Germany, France and the Netherlands.
“The sooner we finish up with the Greek case, the better,” he said. “I think the government is now very close to closing the evaluation, so I hope that on the fifth, there’s going to be white smoke.”
Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras visited the construction site of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline near Alexandroupoli in Thrace yesterday, in what the natural gas pipeline company’s managing director Ian Bradshaw said was ‘one more example of the support TAP has received in recent years from the Greek authorities.’
Bank of Greece Governor Yannis Stournaras, who is also a former finance minister.