BERLIN (Reuters) - German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble told a German newspaper he was sure the Greek government would be able to fulfill the conditions attached to its bailout but warned that it would receive no further aid if it did not keep its promises.
“The new Greek government has a lot of legitimacy with the population. I have confidence in the Greek government to implement the necessary measures, establish a more efficient tax administration and ultimately to fulfill the conditions,” he said in an interview due to be published in Bild am Sonntag on Sunday.
Schaeuble said a new government needed to be given time but he made clear that Athens needed to stick to conditions set by the Eurogroup of euro zone finance ministers, which backed a four-month extension of Greece’s financial rescue after the government submitted a reform plan.
“We made a clear agreement in the Eurogroup. Mr. (Alexis) Tsipras made a promise. If Greece doesn’t stick to that, there will be no further aid,” Schaeuble said according to the pre-publication extract.
He said a Grexit was not the desired outcome and nobody had forced a bailout upon Greece so the ball was in Athens’ court.
Schaeuble said it would only be clear if Greece needed further aid once the second bailout was completed, adding: “Whatever happens, we’ll set very strict standards.”
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras denied on Friday that Greece would need another international bailout.
In the interview, Schaeuble said his Greek counterpart, Yanis Varoufakis, with whom he has clashed in recent weeks, was “just as entitled to respect as everyone else. He has behaved completely appropriately towards me.”
Reporting by Michelle Martin; editing by Ralph Boulton
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.