Austerity measures were in fact counterproductive to reaching the goal
of reducing government debt. European policies in the aftermath of the
"great recession" of 08/09 have been
actively harmful for the Greek economy. They have induced economic
effects directly opposing those intended by those policies. Instead of
reducing debt to GDP ratio to a healthy level, they have actually done
the opposite. The IMF is exactly right to demand debt relief before
contributing to more loans. To oppose this position is an economic
absurdity. To oppose it on grounds of pre-election political maneuvering
also is dishonest to voters. The European project will never succeed
without fiscal transfers from richer to poorer regions of the Union.
German finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble and the IMF’s managing director Christine Lagarde.