March 7, 2010 / 8:58 PM / in 8 years

Lamfalussy says euro zone stable despite Greece

BUDAPEST, March 7 (Reuters) - The euro zone is stable despite the financial woes of Greece, which are far more serious than economic challenges faced by any other member states, economist Alexandre Lamfalussy said on Sunday.

Lamfalussy was founding president of the European Monetary Institute, which became the European Central Bank.

“I‘m not pleased what has happened (in Greece) but I don’t worry,” he told the Hungarian state television M1 in an interview. “The euro zone is so hardy that an explosion or meltdown is out of question.”

He reacted to concerns voiced by investors including billionaire Gyorgy Soros who has said the euro currency’s future was in question even if Greece is rescued as Spain, Italy, Portugal and Ireland also had economic problems. [IDnLDE61L07V]

“No other (euro zone member) state is in a situation comparable to Greece,” said Lamfalussy, who was born in Hungary like Soros.

He said Greece needed continuing efforts including austerity measures to consolidate its finances, but concerns in markets over the euro zone were exaggerated.

“Markets always overshoot in one or the other direction.”

Reporting by Sandor Peto, editing by Martin Golan

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