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Private Sector Deal Can't Help Greece: Analysts

Wednesday, 18 Jan 2012 | 2:37 AM ET

The deterioration in growth in the Greek economy means that getting the private sector involvement necessary to reduce the debt of the country will not be enough to make the debt manageable, according to some experts.

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"The deterioration in growth means that you won't get anything near a PSI (private sector involvement) of 90 percent which is what they originally forecast you would need to get Greece's debt to GDP ratio down to 120 percent in 10 years time," Patrick Armstrong, managing partner at Armstrong Investments told CNBC.

Private Sector Involvement refers to private investors including banks, insurers and pension funds taking a loss on their holdings of Greek government debt.

Armstrong added that even with 90 percent involvement Greece still would not be able to achieve its goal of 120 percent debt to GDP ratio in the longer term.

He added it would be "lucky" if Greece got 75 percent PSI involvement.

The pressure on Greece has been ramped up this week after reports that talks between Greece and private investors of its debt had reached deadlock.

The debt turmoil was further exacerbated after Standard & Poor's ratings agency downgraded nine euro zone countries including France and Italy. The downgrades had been threatened for some time but the loss of France's triple A rating has caused controversy there.

Greece needs to pass reforms that the "troika" – the IMF, EU and ECB – deems necessary in order to receive the next tranche of bailout money or it could face a default in March.

Wim Boonstra, Executive Vice- President and Chief Economist at Radobank, echoed this sentiment arguing that without a "very high" debt write-off, Greece could not resolve its problems.

"The debt is too high, the economy is shrinking and they have a competitiveness problem. The Greek economy is in disarray. A default looks unavoidable but at the same time I agree that leaving the euro is not an option at all," Boonstra said.

Hans Redeker, global head of foreign exchange strategy at Morgan Stanley said the root cause of the crisis needed to be tackled.

"The reason for the crisis is a competitive gap. Greece needs to generate sufficient income from abroad. The competitive gap is currently staying wide.

What Europe has to decide is whether they prop up Greece and put a lot of money into Greece or look into other options," Redeker said.

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