Greek central bank chief: recovery effort in ‘last mile,’ asks politicians to cool rhetoric

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ATHENS, Greece – Greece’s central bank governor is urging the country’s politicians to avoid heated confrontation ahead of European Parliament and local government elections in May, urging them to back a financial recovery effort through its “last mile.”

George Provopoulos said the country was on course to exit a six-year recession this year after achieving a primary budget surplus — balanced expenses before interest payments — for the first time since 2002. He made the remarks to a parliamentary finance committee Thursday.

Opposition parties are hoping to topple the conservative-led coalition government in the twin May elections, arguing that bailout measures have caused a social crisis and failed to fix the country’s debt problem.

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