(AA) – Greece should have never joined the Eurozone, Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said Thursday.
Addressing a panel organized by the Institute of New Economic Thinking and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development in Paris, Varoufakis slammed EU countries for policies they allegedly implemented to create the economic crisis, accusing them of not having learned lessons since 2010.
“The last five years will be a perfect case study of non-crisis management in the next 50 or 60 years,” he said.
According to him, eurozone’s fundamental problem was its rigid and unbalanced structure.
“When Greece is linked with a country like Germany, you will certainly have a negative balance on the accounts,” the minister said, highlighting the massive flow of capital to Greece from richer countries into the eurozone, including Germany.
This flow also allegedly caused a “false impression of growth in Greece, until we reached the current crisis,” he said.
However, Varoufakis insisted that his criticism of the eurozone structure did not mean Greece was willing to leave the EU.
“The architects of eurozone have a moral obligation to repair it and not destroy it,” he said.
About Greece’s financial woes, Varouflakis said that the Troika, which includes the European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund, pretended to face a “liquidity problem, while the country actually suffers an insolvency problem.”
According to the former economics professor, the Troika was used to imposing austerity measures, while this solution, which he described as a drug, was “not therapeutic.”
Varouflakis added that EU’s malignancy was the reason why the Greek economy had still not seen growth, while wages had fallen by 40 percent.
On Thursday, Greece made a €450m loan repayment to the International Monetary Fund, one day after it succeeded in auctioning off €1.138 billion euros ($1.24 billion) of six-month Treasury bills Wednesday in the first of two auctions expected in April, as it seeks to find funding to make payments of nearly €400m by the end of this month.
The bonds were sold at a yield of 2.97 percent, the same yield at a March auction. Investors were not expected to take on the additional risks inherent in Greek sovereign debt, but observers said there was optimism about a bailout soon.
The newly-elected Greek government, led by the leftist Syriza party, is currently negotiating with its European creditors, of which Germany is the largest, and submitted a new list of economic reforms in an effort to obtain the next €7.2 billion ($7.9 billion) tranche of the bailout.