World Bulletin / News Desk
Greece’s president said on Friday Athens would meet its international obligations as long as its European lenders did the same.
Prokopis Pavlopoulos was speaking at a news conference following a meeting with his German counterpart, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who is in Athens on a two-day visit.
“I want to assure you that Greece will overcome the crisis and will remain in the EU and the Eurozone,” Pavlopoulos said stressing that the Greek people had suffered in order to maintain membership of both bodies.
This statement came a few hours after Eurozone ministers met in Malta to discuss the progress of Greece’s second bailout review.
According to an official announcement by Greece’s Finance Ministry, the key meeting resulted to an agreement.
Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem said earlier on Friday Greece would have to lower its pension spending by one percent of GDP in 2019, in addition to lowering its tax-free threshold on earnings.
Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos insisted Greece would be a country “without supervision” after the reform program was completed.
However, Greek workers and pensioners have repeatedly demonstrated their opposition to austerity measures.
Steinmeier welcomed the Eurogroup meeting’s outcome but said Europe was not facing “a common crisis.”
“We are dealing with a different situation here,” Steinmeier told reporters. “After Brexit, Europe is dealing with a greater challenge and apparently what we thought to be certain -- for the past decades -- is not that certain after all,” he added.
“The small adjustments we made in the past don’t work anymore; we need to provide our people with solutions and answers,” he said.