IMF chief Lagarde rebuffs idea of Greek repayment delay

WASHINGTON (AFP) - International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde strongly rebuffed on Thursday talk of Greece obtaining a delay on its debt payments to the Fund.

"It's clearly not a course of action that would actually fit," she said, adding: "We have never had an advanced economy ask for payment delays."

“Payment delays have not been granted by the board of the IMF in the last 30 years,” she continued at a news conference as the IMF and World Bank spring meetings were getting underway in Washington.

In cases in the past where it did happen, “that delay was not followed by very productive results.” With huge debt payments looming and lack of progress toward a new financing deal with the European Union, media reports said Athens had informally asked the IMF to be allowed to put off payments to the Fund.

Lagarde said any such action was the equivalent of adding more financing for Greece, and that it would create an additional burden on Fund members, some of which are much more needy than Greece.