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Page last updated at 08:49 GMT, Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Greece 'unlikely to meet targets'


Eurozone leaders finally came to the rescue of Greece today, approving a second massive bailout after months of wrangling and a last round of more than 12 hours of talks in Brussels.

And in return for this the Greek government will try to reduce its debt to about 120 percent of GDP by 2020.

Professor Ngaire Woods, of Oxford University's Blavatnik School of Government and member of the IMF European Regional Advisory Group told the Today programme's Sarah Montague that Greece is "unlikely to meet its targets" in what she termed a "political game".

She said that is politically "tricky terrain" because if the EU is seen to be pushing the Greek government too hard, "politicians will look like puppets."

Guntram Wolff, deputy director of the European think tank Bruegel, said that the "least worst option is to continue with assistance and to get relief from public and private sector" but that there is a "weak" growth strategy in Greece which needs to be addressed.

Meanwhile former chancellor Alistair Darling said he was sceptical about the deal and questioned whether it was a realistic option for Greece's "frail economy".

He also questioned the lack of a policy for economic growth in the country, saying that it affected the UK because Europe was such a big market.

Mr Darling said the deal needed to be done but does not get Greece "out of the woods" and that unless people can see light at the end of the tunnel it will be difficult to deliver the reforms that are being proposed.

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