European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso on Wednesday appointed Horst Reichenbach, Vice-President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and former Director General of the Commission, to chair the Task Force for providing technical assistance to Greece.
"With the launch of the Task Force for Greece, the Commission wants no stone left unturned when it comes to using structural funds in the best way possible to assist Greece in enhancing competitiveness, boost growth and tackle unemployment," Barroso said.
He noted that Reichenback brought "precious experience and great expertise to the task".
Barroso proposed a comprehensive programme of technical assistance to Greece during talks with Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou in June, to help support the delivery of the EU-IMF adjustment programme and accelerate the absorption of EU funds. The proposal was endorsed by the European Council on June 23-24.
According to a Commission press release, the Task Force will be based in Brussels, with a support team in Athens. It will closely work with the Greek authorities and the other EU member-states to coordinate the comprehensive programme of technical assistance that Greece needs in order to deliver the EU/ IMF programme. Its work will have a strong focus on competitiveness, growth and employment.
The Task Force will provide a quarterly progress report to the Greek authorities and the Commission, with the first report expected by the end of October. General coordination of the Task Force, reporting to Barroso, will be ensured by European Commissioner Olli Rehn.