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German finance minister announces upcoming visit to Greece
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble on Monday announced his intention to visit Athens in the coming weeks, in response to an invitation made by his Greek counterpart Yannis Stournaras during a phone conversation held over the weekend.
In statements after meeting Greece's Ambassador in Berlin Panagiotis Zografos, Schaeuble said the visit would focus on the extension to Greece of a programme designed by Germany and Spain for the financing of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), for fighting youth unemployment and possibly setting up a Greek investment bank. The details of the plan will be discussed on the sidelines of upcoming Eurogroup and ECOFIN meetings in Luxembourg, the German finance minister added.
In other statements, Schaeuble also expressed his respect for the Greek people and Greece's coalition government, noting that the first signs of the success of economic reforms in Greece were already becoming apparent and the outline of a more stable economic future was beginning to emerge.
"For the time being, there are no easy decisions for Greece. We must not allow a disorientation from these successes with hypothetical questions about 'what would happen if'. One thing is certain: Greece has already covered a great part of the distance with great success. But there is still a long and difficult road ahead with respect to reforms," Schaeuble said, while pledging that Greece will continue to enjoy the support of European countries and the EC-IMF-ECB troika.
Source: Athens News Agency