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'Greece Has to Deliver': France's Lagarde

Greecemust avoid debt restructuring and implement the austerity measures it has promised to introduce in order to shrink its budget deficit, French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde told CNBC on Monday.

French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde is considered the top contender to replace Strauss-Kahn as IMF chief.
Yoshikazu Tsuno | AFP | Getty Images
French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde is considered the top contender to replace Strauss-Kahn as IMF chief.

"The initial plan for Greece was structured and designed jointly by the ECB, the European Commission and the IMF....We are delivering on our side. Greece has to deliver as well," Lagarde told CNBC.

"Restructuring is off the table. I have said that over and over and over and I stick to the same line," Lagarde said.

As the race for the top job at the IMF heats up, Lagarde has emerged as the favorite to take over from Dominique Strauss-Kahn who resigned last week.

Lagarde declined to comment on whether she would accept the position of IMF chief it it were offered to her. "I’d say what an interesting question, but clearly premature," she said.

The process would be "open, transparent, merit-based," she said, adding: "It’s always very nice to be liked, and it’s what Victor Hugo said once. He said: 'I love being loved,' but you know, we’re not talking about that. We are talking about trying to find the appropriate solutions for the situation as it is."

The financial crisis the world has faced since 2008 had transformed the financial sector and many international institutions who have had to "wake up and be much more alert and agile in their way of operating," Lagarde said.

"If you look at the IMF for instance, the fact that they have sort of invented the flexible credit line, precautionary credit line, and that they are really playing a key role in relation to those countries that have suffered from the crisis is only testimony to the major changes that have resulted from the crisis," she said.

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