Greece still vulnerable, lower fiscal targets could help recovery, says IMF

Greece needs to agree with its eurozone lenders on a lower fiscal target path to achieve a sustainable economic and social recovery, the International Monetary Fund said on Friday after a mission visit to Athens.

Greece, which emerged from bailouts in August last year, has committed to meet a 3.5 percent of GDP primary budget surplus, excluding debt servicing costs, each year up to 2022. The target drops to 2.2 percent thereafter.

This year, Athens is expected to deliver on its commitment, the Washington-based Fund said in a statement. But for 2020, it recommends that a lower primary balance path should be agreed, "given ample economic slack, critical unmet social spending and investment needs and to accommodate spending that would create synergies with stepped-up reforms."

It did not recommend specific new targets on the primary budget surplus sought.

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