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Greece open to "soft" debt restructuring if needed: minister
May 17, 2011 / 11:56 AM / 6 years ago

Greece open to "soft" debt restructuring if needed: minister

BEIJING (Reuters) - BEIJING, May 17 (Reuters) - Greece is willing to discuss the prospect of a “soft restructuring” of its debt if needed, its deputy foreign minister said on Tuesday, but stressed that talks are not happening right now.

“If it’s necessary, we will of course be willing to discuss such things,” Spyros Kouvelis said, when asked about the chance of a “soft restructuring” of Greece’s debt.

“These will be scenarios that we have to look at if need be,” Kouvelis said in an interview in Beijing. “But I think this is a broader question for the whole euro zone that will have to be tackled by the euro group.”

Kouvelis’ comments came after euro zone officials said for the first time on Tuesday that Greece may have to ask investors to extend the maturities of the Greek debt that they hold, or agree to a “soft” restructuring, to give Athens more time to nurse its economy back into health.

Jean-Claude Juncker, the chairman of euro zone finance ministers, said on Tuesday that Greek debt could undergo a ”soft restructuring.

When asked if Athens has ran the idea of a “soft restructuring” of Greek debt by investors, Kouvelis said: “I am not aware of any such discussions yet.”

Reporting by Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Kevin Yao

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