Meeting with Prime Minister of Luxembourg and Head of Eurozone Jean Claude Juncker | Statements

October 13, 2011 | categories : Articles and Statements, Prime Minister

Thursday, October 13, 2011

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Meeting with Prime Minister of Luxembourg and Head of Eurozone Jean Claude Juncker | StatementsJ. C. JUNCKER: Good evening. I am in Brussels today, in order to prepare the European Council of the 23rd of October. I had a meeting this morning in Luxembourg with Commissioner Olli Rehn, then a meeting with the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, and then I had a meeting with my good friend, George Papandreou. We were discussing all the relevant issues, noting with great satisfaction that the Slovakian Parliament has voted in favour of the EFSF this afternoon, which paves the way to further steps to be taken.

I made it perfectly clear in all the meetings I had today, and mainly with the Greek Prime Minister, that all those who are speculating that Greece could be obliged to leave the euro area are misled in their judgement. This will not happen, as it will not happen that we will have to face a Greek default. Everything will be done in order to maintain the financial stability of the euro area. We will be helpful as far as we can to Greece; we’ll be given the Troika report by mid-next week, and on the basis of the compliance report and of the debt sustainability report, we’ll take under exam during a special meeting of the Eurogroup all these elements in order to prepare the European Council of the 23rd in the best way possible.

I don’t know all the elements of the reports that will be given by the Troika, but I am really optimistic that we’ll decide to have the sixth tranche being launched.

G. A. PAPANDREOU: Thank you, Jean-Claude. As you said, this is a time when we have very important challenges ahead of us, and I would also like to salute the decision of the Slovak Parliament. It shows that even though in very difficult decisions and very complex decisions we have the will, in the end, to make the necessary decisions to move forward.

Amongst them of course are the decisions we are making in Greece. We are committed to make major changes in our country, because we have great potential, although this potential has been in the past mismanaged.

But that’s why the Greek people want these changes, so that we go to a viable, sustainable economy, one that is competitive, one that is also just and transparent.

And I had a very good discussion with Jean-Claude about the preparations and the necessary work needed for the next few days, so that we do have a successful meeting on the 23rd of October. This is, I think, our challenge, but it is also, as you have said, one I think we can meet in the best of ways.

QUESTION: How much do you think will be needed? Will your plan then be bigger than 159?

J. C. JUNCKER: I don’t want to speculate around this kind of questions. All these things will be dealt with in the course of the European Council.

It’s not mainly about figures. It’s mainly about content. We need a straightforward plan, and I am optimistic that we will be able to decide on a plan.

QUESTION: But if we need more than 21% PSI, then that’s more than 50 PSI.

J. C. JUNCKER: We are discussing these things.