Germany's Angela Merkel has played down the chances of a Greek exit from the Euro zone, but made clear she expected Athens to stick to the terms of its international bailouts after this month's election.
Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said Greece is not Argentina and pledged his country will avoid Argentina’s fate of staying mired in economic troubles more than a decade after defaulting on debt.
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble warned Greece in a newspaper interview Monday that it must redouble efforts to comply with bailout conditions imposed by international creditors. If there were delays, Greece must make up for them, he told the daily Bild.
Greece must not lose time trying to renegotiate its foreign bailout but focus on reforms instead, European Central Bank policymaker Joerg Asmussen said on Monday, in a blow to Greek hopes of winning quick concessions from its lenders.
Greece's new government should stop asking for more help and instead move quickly to enact reform measures agreed to in return for previous bailouts from its European partners, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said.
Greece's two governing parties, which back tough austerity measures, have lost their parliamentary majority in Sunday's election. With almost all votes counted, centre-right New Democracy is leading with 19%, down from 33.5% in 2009.
Greece's creditors failed to persuade the leader of the main conservative party to drop his refusal to sign a pledge that he will back austerity measures under a bailout deal aimed at saving the country from financial ruin.
Greece's new government took a first step on Friday towards meeting terms of an international bailout needed to avoid bankruptcy, submitting a budget bill that foresees no new austerity measures next year as long as reforms are enacted.