European Security Mechanism (ESM) chief Klaus Regling has sent a stern message to Athens regarding the consequences if Greece chooses not to implement reforms agreed to with creditors, in an interview with the Austrian newspaper Die Presse.
Regling revealed that “We were minutes away from a Grexit in 2015.”
“Greece needs to continue with reforms. We are a very patient creditor, but we can stop the debt relief measures that we have agreed to with Greece, if the adjustment programme does not continue as we have agreed. I am optimistic after my recent discussions with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras. The debt levels are alarmingly high. Greece, however, can live with that, as the maturities are very long and the interest rate is much lower than in other countries,” Regling said.
Regling said that cooperation with the IMF went well with four other countries that had bailout programmes, and only in Greece did issues arise occasionally.