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Monday, 6 February 2017

Greece/IMF: Article IV Report; Το άρθρο IV της έκθεσης

Report warnings, Kathimerini (in Greek)

Schäuble - Ohne IWF-Beteiligung ist Griechenland-Programm beendet, (thanks to KTG for link)

IMF says Greece should meet lower fiscal surplus target, Reuters

Εκθεση ΔΝΤ: Mη βιώσιμο το χρέος, επιτάχυνση μεταρρυθμίσεων, μείωση συντάξεων και φορολογίας, Kathimerini

IMF Executive Board Meeting on Greece: Full Statement and Recap, Greek Reporter

Not a unanimous staff appraisal, it seems (note that the qualifiers are not revealed)..."Most Executive Directors agreed with the thrust of the staff appraisal while some Directors had different views on the fiscal path and debt sustainability..Most Directors agreed that Greece does not require further fiscal consolidation at this time...While most Directors favored a budget-neutral rebalancing, some Directors considered that the reforms could underpin temporarily higher primary surpluses, provided that they are implemented once the output gap closes so that the impact on the recovery is minimized...Most Directors considered that, despite Greece’s enormous sacrifices and European partners’ generous support, further relief may well be required to restore debt sustainability".

"Directors encouraged the authorities to accelerate the implementation of structural reforms to enhance competitiveness".

IMF Executive Board Concludes 2016 Article IV Consultation, and Discusses Ex Post Evaluation of Greece’s 2012 Extended Fund Facility, IMF Press Release

The ping-pong game continues...some tough talk for show, and to pacify electorates...

Dijsselbloem: IMF Report on Greece ‘Unnecessarily Pessimistic, Greek Reporter

EU faces crisis as IMF warns Greek debts are on ‘explosive’ path, The Telegraph

IMF: Greece Needs ‘Painful Reforms’ to Return to ‘Sustainable Growth’, Greek Reporter

"Thomsen repeated that Greece does not need to take additional austerity measures but argued that it is necessary to proceed with difficult reforms that will allow a more equitable distribution of social spending, creating a more friendly framework for the growth of the economy. However, even with these reforms (in pensions, taxation, market liberalization and strengthening competitiveness), he claimed, Greece will not manage to get on track if the reforms are not accompanied by a generous adjustment of its debt in order for it to become sustainable".

IMF calls on Greek state to pay its share of austerity - The International Monetary Fund says Greece's austerity package is failing because the public sector hasn't made as many sacrifices as the private sector, and because banks haven't been enabled to finance the growth of business, The New Athenian.

IMF Statements  

Staff Report (96 pages), pdf

Challenge 1: An unsustainable fiscal policy mix based on unaffordable pensions financed by high tax rates on narrow bases

Challenge 2: An ineffective tax administration, weak payment culture, and rising tax debt ...

Trump envoy says Greece is now more likely to leave the euro, The Guardian

Potential US Ambassador to EU Doubles Down About Potential Grexit; Admits Chaos and Instability Could Follow. The Pappas Post

Greek Government Divided Over Deadlock in Creditor Talks - The wrangling comes amid mounting doubts in financial markets that Greece can fulfill tough terms of latest bailout plan - The Wall Street Journal (subscribe/sign in)

The IMF Staff Has It Right on Greece, Bloomberg

Lagarde Says IMF Tried to be ‘Ruthless Truth Teller’ On Greece’s Latest Audit, Greek Reporter

Schäuble: Müssen Druck auf Griechenland aufrecht halten,'Bundesfinanzminister Wolfgang Schäuble (CDU) will im Streit über die Griechenland-Rettung nicht locker lassen...  "Deswegen muss der Druck auf Griechenland aufrecht erhalten bleiben, die Reformen zu machen und wettbewerbsfähig zu sein. Sonst können sie nicht in der Währungsunion bleiben."'

IMF Asks for Lower Tax-Free Threshold and Pensions, Greek Reporter

Greece debt crisis: Is Merkel pushing Schaeuble aside for a political solution? KTG

Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos with top European officials in Brussels, Euronews 

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