Sound Bites: Greek Political Drama Continues, EU Defends Current Agreements
Syriza party leader Alexis Tsipras (likely to win most seats should June election be held):
Greece should remain in Eurozone, but only on condition that “catastrophic” policy of austerity ends.
Greek newspaper Ta Nea, citing Prime Minister Lucas Papademos:
With political stalemate and EFSF withholding 1 billion Euros of aid, Greece to face funding issues by June.
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble:
Election does not change need for Greece to meet budget-consolidation obligations. Renegotiation of bailout agreement out of the question. Adding growth element to European crisis efforts “legitimate,” Germany open to discussing EIB loans.
EU Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn:
Economic recovery to be slow into 2013. Both fiscal consolidation and growth needed to fight European crisis. Concrete recommendations on the issue to be laid out in two weeks.
Eurogroup President Jean-Claude Juncker
Greek Euro exit not discussed at May 14 meeting. Other member states, including Portugal, on track with budget consolidation plans.
RBA Deputy Governor Philip Lowe:
Outlook for global mineral demand remains positive. Australian mining sector to stay “very strong” for several years. Firm Australian Dollar over coming years “highly likely.”
SNB President Thomas Jordan
Swiss Franc still considered overvalued. More appreciation of Franc would be danger to price stability. “Essential” that SNB continue to focus on exchange-rate floor.
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