Statement by the EC, ECB, and IMF on the Interim Review Mission to GreecePress Release No. 10/246
June 17, 2010
Staff teams from the European Commission (EC), the European Central Bank (ECB), and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) visited Athens during June 14-17 to follow up on recent developments and implementation of policies under the economic program for Greece.
While the mission did not undertake a comprehensive review at this time, its discussions suggest that the program is on track and that policies are being implemented as agreed:
- Fiscal developments are positive with central government revenues coming in closely as expected and with firm expenditure control in the state budget. Based on preliminary cash data, through end-May, the state budget deficit was lower than was projected in the program. A final assessment would have to take account of developments outside central government, for which complete information is not available at this time.
- The pension reform is advanced and agreement has been reached on many key parameters as envisaged in the memorandum of understanding. The authorities are conducting the required projections to assess the contribution that pension reform will make to improve the long-term sustainability of public finances.
- Other structural reforms are also progressing, including in the areas of local administration, privatization, labor market, and tax administration.
- On the financial sector, good progress is being made toward establishment of the Financial Stability Fund. Liquidity in the banking sector remains adequate.
Next steps. The three teams will return to Athens toward the end of July to conduct a comprehensive review under the program, including an assessment of progress relative to quantitative targets and benchmarks for end-June. This will be the first formal review under the program. Satisfactory completion of this review would enable Greece to make the second drawing under the program.