EU's Olli Rehn welcomes Greece-troika agreement

Olli Rehn, Vice President of the European Commission in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs, on Wednesday hailed a staff level agreement between the Greek government and the troika announced in Athens on Tuesday.

“This is very welcome news,” said Rehn during an EU press briefing in Brussels, noting that Greece’s lengthy negotiations with its partners and creditors had demonstrated a “constructive approach by all parties to often difficult discussions.”

“The mission has confirmed that the Greek economy is beginning to stabilize and is projected to gradually return to growth in the course of this year,” he noted.

Fiscal performance was on track to meet agreed targets and important structural reforms have been agreed to improve Greece's economic flexibility, said Rehn. He added that the agreement was also expected to strengthen the safety net for the more vulnerable members of Greek society while an expansion of employment programs via EU structural funds would lead to the creation of jobs.

Investors were showing an increased interest in Greece, noted Rehn, who stressed that private productive investment would be the key driver of sustainable growth and job creation.

“Overall it is clear today that Greece is turning the corner,” said Rehn, who added that this was “good news not only for Greek people but for all Europeans.”