ATHENS — Greece will emerge stronger from the coronavirus crisis, as the government was fast in taking measures and its economy was in good condition when the crisis began, Eurogroup Chairman Mario Centeno and European Commission Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis said at an online conference organized by the Economist on "Eurozone: Seeking a vaccine for the coronavirus" on Friday.
Addressing the conference, Greek Finance Minister Christos Staikouras presented the measures taken by the government to deal with the consequences of the pandemic and stressed the government has created a basis for a strong economic recovery in 2021. Staikouras added that the government will not use the 15.7- billion-euro buffer of the European Stability Mechanism and that in the second half of the year the government will re-examine whether to proceed with an advance repayment of a second section of IMF loans.
Commenting on the Greek economy, Piraeus Bank CEO Christos Megalou said that Greece has the ability to laungh for a prolonged economic recovery period after this year's recession, with a possible higher long-term growth rate.
On his part, Centeno said today's crisis was a completely different one for Greece than the one experienced 10 years ago, as the Greek economy registered a better performance before the coronavirus compared with that of the Eurozone, adding that the crisis will not bring the country down. He noted that there will be rules for the disbursement of funds from a Recovery Fund but stressed that there will be no troika involved.