ATHENS, June 22 (Reuters) - Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Friday a decision by euro zone's creditors to offer debt relief marked a definitive turn of the crisis-hit country away from a relentless cycle of austerity.
"Yesterday we had a historic agreement upon which Greek debt is rendered viable," Tsipras told Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos during a meeting.
Euro zone finance ministers earlier Friday offered Greece, which has received three bailouts since 2010, a 10-year deferral and maturities extension on a large part of past loans as well as 15 billion euros in new credit to ensure Athens can stand on its own feet after it exits its third bailout in August .
"This is a new page for the country. It doesn't mean we should abandon the prudent path of fiscal balance and structural reforms... but it does mean we can abandon the thorny path of memorandums and extreme austerity," Tsipras said.
Greeks have seen their economy shrink by a quarter, unemployment spike and salaries and pensions slashed by about 40 percent since first falling into crisis in 2010. The country has required three international bailouts.
A tie-less Tsipras, who has made debt relief a focal point of his administration, has frequently said he would don a cravat once the country got debt relief.
So there were a few raised eyebrows on Friday when he appeared open-collared.
"A bet is a bet. I don't think I can get out of this one and will have to wear a tie," Tsipras said.
"I have to find (the right) shirt, because I don't have one," he told Pavlopoulos. (Reporting By Michele Kambas; Editing by Toby Chopra)