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Parliamentary questions
12 June 2018
E-000171/2018
Answer given by Mr Moscovici on behalf of the Commission

The Commission welcomes the European Court of Auditor’s (ECA) performance audit and has accepted all recommendations. The audit examined the first two financial assistance programmes for Greece, but only the design of the ongoing European Stability Mechanism (ESM) stability programme.

The Commission acknowledges that at the outset of the crisis, the Euro area lacked financial instruments and a legal framework to provide financial assistance to Euro area countries. This situation has substantially evolved with the creation of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and subsequently the ESM. The ECA report acknowledges progress made, including the prioritisation of reforms.

The Commission confirms that EUR 45 billion has been used for the Greek banking sector to tackle an extremely difficult economic situation and prevent a collapse of the sector.

The private sector involvement (PSI) to support the sustainability of the Greek debt implied a cost to the Greek banking system of EUR 37.7 billion(1) and constituted a major factor for determining the recapitalisation needs. The 2015 recapitalisation of banks was a consequence of the dramatic events in relation to the decision of the Greek government not to complete the 2nd EFSF programme and the subsequent need to impose capital controls.

Of the available financial sector envelope (EUR 25 billion) within the ESM programme only EUR 5.4 billion were used. This and other reforms undertaken in response to the acute crisis allowed for the stabilisation of the entire system and therefore justify the injected funds.

They ensured achievement of the key objectives of the programmes: avert a sovereign default and ensure financial stability. The counterfactual scenario — a financial system collapse — would have brought about far more significant costs.

(1)https://www.bankofgreece.gr/BogEkdoseis/Report_on_the_recapitalisation_and_restructuring.pdf p. 13

Last updated: 14 June 2018Legal notice