Greece not planning to restructure debt: PM

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Prime Minister Georges Papandreou said Thursday that Greece's debt does not need to be restructured and insisted Athens is on track for a return to economic growth next year.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in the Swiss ski resort of Davos, Papandreou said: "I can also say we are not moving to restructuring. We have a very clear path, a roadmap to move out of the debt problem.

"We are doing what is necessary ... we have shown the will," he added.

Last year debt-wracked Greece secured a three-year, 110-billion-euro ($151 billion) loan from the EU and the International Monetary Fund after it could no longer raise fresh funds on the financial markets.

Its debt problems, however, spread to other indebted countries such as Ireland and Portugal, with Dublin forced to seek help late last year.

Papandreou insisted Greece has the strength to implement the necessary austerity measures to get its economy back on track.

"Last year, I was getting the question: 'Can you do it, will you do it, can the Greek people sustain the pain?' We have shown we can.

"We are on a path, we think, that we can get to growth in 2012 and restore confidence and we are hoping to open up to the markets even this year. We are doing what we should," he said.

Athens is in talks with European officials to extend repayment on its loan but has repeatedly rejected any restructuring of debt, an outcome which some analysts believe may ultimately be necessary.

© 2011 AFP

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