March 13, 2012 / 6:15 PM / 8 years ago

German, French fin mins say worst of euro crisis over

PARIS, March 13 (Reuters) - German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble and his French counterpart Francois Baroin said on Tuesday that the worst of the euro zone crisis appeared to be over, but there was no reason to ease back on reforms.

“We can say that the worst is behind us, but we cannot relax our efforts,” Schaeuble told a conference in Paris on the euro zone crisis, adding that he was not concerned by the monetary policy of the European Central Bank.

The ECB had demonstrated its independence and had a track record of good decision making. Its decisions “do not entail an inflationary risk,” he said.

Baroin echoed his German colleague’s comments, stressing the need for euro zone countries to press ahead with economic and fiscal reforms: “If the question is whether the worst of the crisis is behind us, one can say yes ... If we do not deviate from our path, the worst is behind us.”

Schaeuble said it was too early to speculate whether a further programme would be necessary for Greece, but he noted that its debt sustainability target was for 2020 and the average IMF programme only lasted for 3 or 4 years.

“2020 is more than 3 or 4 years from now,” he said.

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