ECONOMY

Juncker in favor of soft restructuring

Greece needs a «soft, voluntary restructuring» of its debt, according to the head of the Eurogroup, Jean-Claude Juncker, who said that Europe?s central bank would have to agree to such a move.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Juncker told Inforadio Berlin Brandenburg on Saturday that private lenders need to bear some of the burden for a second bailout for Greece but only on a voluntary basis.

He emphasized that such a move would have to be carried out in a way that credit ratings agencies do not interpret as a credit default.

Juncker called for an agreement on the issue with the European Central Bank, which has so far rejected the idea of restructuring Greece?s debt.

“We can’t push through private lender participation without and against the ECB,» Juncker said.

Juncker stressed that Greece needs to reach the fiscal targets it has been set for 2011 in exchange for any new loan package.

“If Greek policies continue as they have in the first six months [of this year], then they won’t reach the budget target,» he said.

The eurogroup head did not specify the amount involved in the second bailout but said figures reported by the media, which have generally ranged between 90 and 120 billion euros, were right.