Gov’t spokesman calls on IMF to ‘stop sitting on fence’

Gov’t spokesman calls on IMF to ‘stop sitting on fence’

Government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos on Monday called on the International Monetary Fund to "stop sitting on the fence and decide whether it is in or out of the program," referring to Greece's third international bailout.

Tzanakopoulos's comments to Skai television came as negotiations between government officials and envoys representing Greece's creditors stall on the thorny issues of labor laws with the Fund assuming a typically tough stance.

"The IMF is insisting on reforms that will not help the competitiveness of the economy," Tzanakopoulos said.

As for the insistence of German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble on austerity and against debt relief, Tzanakopoulos said Schaeuble's positions "have been known since 2010 but the situation has changed."

He reiterated that Athens remains focused on completing the second bailout review without delay.

Regulating labor laws remains one of the government's priorities, he said, noting that the labor market "turned into a jungle during the years of the memorandum."

Restoring collective labor contracts remains the key aim, he said, indicating that the government is not planning to make major concessions to creditors.


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