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February 12, 2010    

IMF lends its support for Greece

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by Kay Murchie

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has today pledged its support for Greece after yesterday’s declaration from the European Union, which will see the debt-stricken economy tackle its spiralling debts.

“We stand willing and able to support Greece in ways that the Greek authorities think is appropriate,” IMF First Deputy Managing Director John Lipsky told reporters on the sidelines of an international central banking conference.

Further support comes from European Central Bank (ECB) President, Jean-Claude Trichet, who said: “I confirm that the ECB will work with the European Commission in monitoring the implementation of the recommendations by Greece.”

However, in the UK, Chancellor Alistair Darling declared Britain out of providing financial support to Greece.

“It is really for Greece to try and resolve its problems, for Greece to deliver on all the promises that it has made. The euro area is managing that area and they will be discussing this…with a view to trying to resolve the matter and I am sure we’ll be able to make progress,” said Mr Darling.

Greece’s runaway budget deficit is currently more than four times the EU limit of 3%. It currently has the highest debt of the 16-member euro zone and its economy is considered to be the euro zone’s weakest.

Currently, its public debt stands at €300 billion (£268 billion).

Meanwhile, Greece’s debt crisis has weakened the value of the euro, it has lost around one tenth of its value against the dollar since late 2009.

The Greek Government has been asked, by the EU, to reduce the budgetary deficit by 4% in 2010.

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