ECONOMY

Greek finance minister makes stop in Paris

Finance Minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou speaks to reporters after his meeting with his French counterpart Christine Lagarde in Paris yesterday. The Greek finance minister said Greece’s recession may be less severe than had been predicted under the economic turnaround plan that helped it to stave off financial collapse earlier this year. Meanwhile, Citigroup said yesterday that bonds issued by developed countries, including those with the highest credit ratings, such as Germany and the US, are not ‘completely safe,’ as demand for public spending is growing faster than revenues. Greece is the country most at risk of default, followed by Ireland, Portugal and Spain, the international bank group said. The US may also face repayment challenges ‘at horizons longer than five years,’ it added. ‘We conclude that no sovereign debt can and should be considered completely safe,’ London-based economists Willem Buiter and Ebrahim Rahbari wrote in a note.