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article imageIMF should show 'good faith' in Greek bailout talks: Macron

By AFP     Sep 7, 2017 in World

The IMF should show "good faith" and avoid making excessive demands of Greece should it choose to participate in the Greek rescue programme's remaining 11 months, French President Emmanuel Macron said Wednesday.

"The IMF's position should be in good faith and without added requirements," Macron said at the start of a two-day official visit to Greece.

Greece's third rescue programme, currently financially supported by EU states alone, runs to August 2018.

The IMF has said it will only contribute funds to the programme if EU creditors take further steps to lighten Greece's debt load, which has yet to happen over strenuous objections by Germany.

Macron on Wednesday bemoaned that the EU had to turn to outside assistance in the first place to rescue Greece in 2010, noting that this reflected a "lack of confidence" between European member states and institutions.

"I don't think that having the IMF supervise European programmes is a good method... the credibility and sovereignty of Europe justified doing things differently," Macron said.

Macron said European rescues were not the IMF's "primary vocation" and that in Greece's case, European ministers spend an excessive amount of time agonising over growth forecasts 25 years into the future, at the global lender's behest.

"If you could tell me my own country's growth forecast in three years I'd be happy," he jibed.

Greece, on the receiving end of two multi-billion euro rescues in which the IMF has been a part since 2010, has frequently complained of the Washington-based lender's demands for fiscal cuts and labour reform.

But Germany in particular has insisted on retaining the IMF, at least in a supervisory role.

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