ECB's Asmussen says Greece must continue reforms as fears about third rescue package intensify

The European Central Bank's (ECB) Jorg Asmussen has said that Greece must continue to implement reforms, saying that the country will have a sound banking system once recapitalisation is complete.

Saying that he "came to Athens to take stock of the current programme" and "to see what the situation is", Asmussen said that he had seen the first signs of stabilisation.

Asmussen declared that the current Greek unemployment level is unacceptable, and that debt relief on primarily surplus will be considered for Spring 2014, but that a third bailout had not yet been discussed.

Earlier German chancellor Angela Merkel confirmed that a third bailout for Greece will not be made before the middle of 2014, as German elections loom.