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Europe Debt Problem More Political Than Economic - Putin

Map of Expanding European UnionBEIJING. Oct 11 (Interfax) - The debt problem in Europe is more political than economic, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said.

"The debt problems do exist, and this is a result of a lack of financial discipline, but this is still more a political than a financial problem so far," Putin said.

"By the way, I do not think that the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) could play some special role here. The European majors have enough resources to resolve these problems," Putin said.

At the same time, the Russian prime minister called to an increased role of the BRICS countries in organizations such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank.

"Of course, it is necessary to sort out these hedge funds and other modern instruments, to reduce the volatility of mineral commodity markets, and in general pay more attention to the real sector and to limit speculation," Putin said.

In this sense, the BRICS countries "can and must have their say and play their positive role in the stabilization of the world economy," he added.

As regards the European debt problems, Greece's is currently the most challenging one, the Russian prime minister said.

"But, if my memory serves me correctly, Greece is just two per cent of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of the entire Europe. Of course, it is possible to close these problems," Putin said. According to various experts, this will require between 1 and 1.5 trillion euro, he added. Of course, "this figure is not small, it is impressive, but overall it is quite manageable for the Eurozone," the Russian prime minister said.

"It will not be such a big amount of money for the Eurozone, although it is a lot, of course. Why is it a political problem? Because in order to concentrate these recourses, the leading European countries must back those, who found themselves in a predicament. This requires certain political courage from these countries' leaders, because the population of these countries is of course not very pleased with such developments," Putin said.

Eventually, the problem solution will be beneficial for the entire united Europe, so "something needs to be done," he said. Everything that is happening in the Eurozone has negative effects on the entire global economy, Putin said.


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