No change appears in IMF opinion on pensions


The International Monetary Fund has shown no indication that it has changed its position regarding the need for planned Greek pension cuts set to come into force in January 2019, according to an announcement by Greece’s Finance Ministry on Minister Euclid Tsakalotos’s meeting with IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde and the Fund’s European Department chief Poul Thomsen in Bali on Friday.

The ministry reported that the two IMF officials “listened with interest” to Tsakalotos’s arguments against the pension cuts that the government has already voted for, but pointed to the European institutions for the next steps. This is likely to add to the uncertainty of the markets, which always take the Fund’s views into great consideration.

In this context Athens will send its 2019 draft budget to Brussels without the pension cuts or the offsetting measures on Monday, according to Finance Ministry sources. There will also be some additional interventions to the first draft, the same sources added.