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Dijsselbloem: Varoufakis was 'catastrophic' for Greece

TAGS: Economy

Yanis Varoufakis’s handling of the Greek crisis was “catastrophic” and the former finance minister constantly tried to undermine direct negotiations with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to find a solution, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, former president of the Eurogroup, has said.

In an interview with private ANT1 television on Monday night, Dijsselbloem said that after a tense press conference in January 2015, in which Varoufakis announced that Greece would no longer deal with the troika, Varoufakis followed him to the elevator asking him to continue the negotiations.

The former Dutch finance minister was optimistic about the future of the Greek economy but said that it would take time for Greece to restore its credibility and overcome the great issues its population is facing.

Greece now has “the flexibility to apply a more social type of policy,” Dijsselbloem said, warning, however, that “it must not repeat the mistakes of the past.”

He noted that the EU had made mistakes in the management of the Greek economic crisis and said the fiscal adjustment programs for Greece were very strict and their implementation very difficult.

Greek politicians were also responsible for many mistakes, even before the crisis, as was Germany, for its delayed reaction to agreeing to a unified EU plan contain the widespread economic crisis, he added.

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