NEWS

Barroso expresses support ahead of EU summit

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso expressed the European Union?s willingness to aid Greece survive its debt crisis, provided that the Greek government implements a series of public spending cuts in an effort to reduce its deficit.

?I know that many people in Greece are living through a period of great hardship and uncertainty,? said Barroso on Wednesday, speaking to MEPs, ahead of a two-day European Union meeting in Brussels which kicks off today.

?My message to the Greek people is that, if the government acts, Europe will deliver. If Greece can demonstrate that it is genuinely committed to the reform package agreed with the European Union and the IMF, we will accompany Greece on its journey back to growth.?

Growth is a key factor in the rescue mission of Greece, a country whose debt already accounts for 150 percent of its gross domestic product and whose long terms hope of restoring economic growth and dramatically improving productivity seem extremely far-fetched today.

Barroso indicated that a billion euros of EU funding could be pushed forward, provided that the Greek people make «exceptional efforts» that would bring ?hope and solutions within their reach.?

Meanwhile, the Greek government is feverishly working on passing its midterm fiscal plan through Greek Parliament on June 28, a move which would unleash some 12 billion euros of European aid by early July.