A top European Central Bank official says that Greece must fulfill its austerity and reform targets “100 percent” to stay in the euro and is questioning whether Athens can be given more time. Greece’s new government wants to lower some taxes, freeze public sector layoffs and extend by two years the mid-2014 deadline for austerity measures demanded by creditors in exchange for loans that are keeping the country afloat.
But ECB executive board member Joerg Asmussen told Germany’s ARD television Sunday that there can be no departure from the aims of consolidating Greece’s budget and improving its competitiveness.
He added that “one can talk about” how to achieve those aims. But he said that would mean that if the government wants to cut one tax, it has to raise another.
(source: ARD, AP)