The Managing Director of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) Klaus Regling stressed for the need for the Greek government to implement and stick to the bailout program, in an interview for Ta Nea.

The ESM chief underlined that there is no intention to change the agreement, in relation to the Greek side’s aim to lower the 3.5% GDP primary surplus goal after 2018, suggesting that this is a view shared by the entire Eurogroup. As for the possibility of debt relief, this matter will be addressed at the end of the program in 2018.

Commenting on the dispute and resistance towards privatizations from certain ministers, the ESM chief notes that they are annoying, but was quick to add that neither the Prime Minister nor the Minister of Finance have made such statements. Regling also expressed his agreement with the European Commission’s stance on ELSTAT.

According to Regling, Greece will return to the credit markets in 2017, while the bailout program and ESM funding will end in mid-2018. This, however, he notes will necessitate that the current program is fully implemented and a new one will not be needed.