and a good New Year to everyone!
"For the first time an agreement is reached that represents more than an accounting exercise. It is a more intelligent approach, based on necessary structural reforms, that could mark a new beginning. Papandreou and Samaras never committed themselves to such in-depth structural reforms. Tsipras shows that he is committed to keep Greece in the Eurozone.
"The new package entails some structural reforms to make Greece competitive again. Closed professions will be opened to competition, the energy market will be deregulated and measures will be taken to re-install the rule of law. If these reforms are implemented, they can bring back trust that Greece's future is in the Eurozone. This certainty will lead to more investments, necessary to make Greece's economy grow.
"I hope the Greek Parliament will support this package. But then the real, and most important part of the work starts. The reforms have to be fully implemented.
"This new approach should go hand in hand with a new, more transparent way of overseeing the implementation process. The last couple of years have shown the work of the Troika was hampered by a lack of transparency.
"During the first meeting of the Conference of Presidents with my fellow Group Leaders in the European Parliament, I will propose that the European Parliament should be given a role in overseeing the implementation of the reform package. A transparent monitoring process, including a periodical debate in the European Parliament on the state of play of the implementation measures,will give confidence to both the creditors and the countries in economic transition that reforms will be duly implemented."