Greece must speed up reforms to send signal to markets, Moscovici says


Greece needs to deliver on its reforms to send a positive signal to debt markets before a meeting of euro zone finance ministers next month, European Union Commissioner Pierre Moscovici said on Thursday.

The European Commission said on Wednesday that Greece has made progress on reforms but not enough to get 750 million euros of profits from Greek bonds held by euro zone central banks.

Athens now needs to complete the 16 reforms promised to its euro zone partners before a March 11 Eurogroup meeting.

“I hope and I expect that there will be significant results in the (next) Eurogroup which will send a crystal-clear message to markets that Greece is credible,” Moscovici told Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras in Athens.

Moscovici said open issues discussed with Tsipras on Thursday included the sale of coal-fired plants, a plan to reduce bad loans at Greek banks and a replacement for a current law that protects borrowers from home foreclosures.

“The criteria must focus to those who really need it, not to strategic defaulters who could exploit it,” Moscovici told reporters, in translated comments.