Greek Finance Minister: Don’t Make Greece Scapegoat for Global Economy

Posted September 25th, 2011 at 5:26 pm (UTC-5)
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Greek Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos said Greece must not be made the scapegoat for the world's financial problems. He vowed that Greece will stay in the Eurozone.

Venizelos spoke in Washington Sunday as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund wrapped up their annual meetings. Greece was a major topic.

Venizelos said there has been a lot of negative stereotyping of Greece. But he said the country will take any steps needed to meet its budget goals and obligations to its creditors. He called that decision final and irrevocable.

Greece has slashed civil service pay, hiked taxes, and is selling off some state-owned assets to close a massive deficit that is threatening the entire European Union.

Last year's $159 billion EU and IMF bailout did little to help the Greek debt crisis. But Greece says it needs the next loan payment by next month to avoid default. EU and IMF officials say they must certify that Greece is meeting their economic reform demands before handing over the money.