[MADRID] The euro zone will not make any cash payment to Greece until it has passed and implemented all the reforms Athens agreed on in February, Spain's Economy Minister Luis de Guindos told the Financial Times on Sunday.
The Spanish stance heaps pressure on Greece three days after it pledged to meet creditors' demands for a broad package of economic reform proposals within days to unlock the funds it needs to avoid stumbling out of the euro zone. "We will see whether the list of reforms is comprehensive enough or not. (But) there will not be any disbursement before there is a real test that the reforms have been approved and implemented. That is the approach," de Guindos was quoted as saying. "Nobody can violate the rules. It would be a failure for Greece or any other member to leave the euro. But it would be a similar, or even bigger, failure to breach our rules," he also said, adding that the Greek government should return to the policies of the previous centre-right government. "The point is to put Greece back on the growth path. How do we do that? We have to do that through measures aimed at competitiveness, at increasing productivity, at cracking down on oligopolies and monopolies, having a proper tax collection and a real privatisation program," de Guindos also said.
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, who had indicated he could offer a full package of reforms within a week or 10 days, will visit German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on Monday.