BUSINESS

Stournaras to meet ex-ECB chief Trichet in Athens on Tuesday

Greek Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras will meet former European Central Bank president Jean-Claude Trichet on Tuesday, the government has announced.

The two men are due to meet at 10.30 a.m. as part of Trichet’s visit to Greece. Speaking at a hearing for the European Parliament’s troika inquiry last month, Trichet defended the ECB’s role in dealing with the euro crisis.

Trichet, who stepped down in November 2011 after Greece, Ireland and Portugal had been bailed out, said the EU had experienced the «worst crisis since World War II ... and we are still in crisis."

But Trichet told the economic and monetary affairs committee the situation could have been much worse.

"Had central banks not been very bold ... had governments not been very bold we would have seen the worst crisis since World War I ... worse than in 1929,» he said.

"We avoided the Great Depression ... not the Great Recession,» he added. «This is something fundamental."

He added that he ignored the International Monetary Fund’s concerns about Greek debt sustainability to give him time to combat the German and French idea of introducing Private Sector Involvement (PSI) in all bailouts.

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