Germany admitted austerity would destroy Greece, says Varoufakis


The Sunday Telepgraph reported on 29th April that Greece was forced to sign up to crippling austerity policies even though the German finance minister privately admitted he would not personally have endorsed the deal.

The extraordinary admission by Wolfgang Schaeuble was made to Yanis Varoufakis, the former Greek finance minister, whose new memoir is serialised in The Telegraph.

In a frank private exchange, Mr Varoufakis asked Mr Schaeuble if he personally would sign up to the EU-ordered austerity plan which saw billions cut from Greek budgets and many Greeks lose their jobs.

“As a patriot, no. It’s bad for your people,” the senior German minister replied.

The Germans are also accused in the book of blocking a Chinese rescue deal for Greece – and of repeatedly going back on promises and pledges made by other senior European figures as the EU battled to hold the Eurozone together.

In a 500 page insiders account of nearly six months of encounters, Mr Varoufakis revealed secret recordings of his conversations with European leaders. The report is a stark warning to Britain as it seeks to negotiate Brexit.

He warns that the British Government must prepare an alternative deal as the EU will use dubious negotiating tactics to block reasonable discussion and potential solutions. “They will get you the sequencing” he warns as they first look to fight over the cost of the divorce before they sit down to discuss free trade.