Greece will return to credit markets next year if the country’s international creditors offer debt relief measures at a crucial May 24 meeting of eurozone finance ministers, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told a newspaper on Sunday.
The leftist leader, re-elected in September on promises to mitigate the impact of austerity on crisis-weary Greeks, also hopes for progress on easing its debt burden, which is set to reach 182.8 percent of gross domestic product this year, according to European Commission forecasts.
“If we achieve what we seek for the debt on May 24, we will return to the markets in 2017,” he told Realnews newspaper.
“We might exit the bailout once and for all a lot before the program expires in August 2018,” Tsipras added.
Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos said last year a long-term commitment to debt relief from eurozone countries was key to restoring investor confidence, and that Athens could return to bond markets by the end of 2016.
Greece’s 10-year bond yields fell below 8 percent for the first time in more than six months last week after eurozone finance ministers offered debt relief to the country from 2018.
They soared to almost 19 percent at the height of the country’s debt crisis in mid-2015.