ATHENS, Aug. 22 (Xinhua) -- Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras reiterated Greece's commitment to reforms to tackle the debt crisis during talks with Eurogroup head Jean-Claude Juncker here on Wednesday, appealing to international creditors for more time to meet goals under bailout deals.
Any further support to Greece will depend on the report of European Union (EU)/International Monetary Fund (IMF) auditors due in Athens in September to assess the progress in the implementation of the terms of deals so far, Juncker replied in statements to the media.
The European official avoided to out rightly reject or back an extension of the current fiscal adjustment period or a third rescue package for Greece.
"We are determined to meet our obligations. We will meet the goals," Samaras told the press following the meeting with his Luxembourg counterpart.
"We will prove wrong those who bet on Greece's exit from the eurozone," stressed the Greek premier in the first of a series of significant talks with European leaders this week.
"I am on Greece's side ... Greeks are making a huge effort which is not acknowledged in all parts of the eurozone ... I am sure the Greek government is determined to take all steps necessary to secure the next disbursement of loans," Juncker said during the joint press briefing.
In a message of support to Greek efforts ahead of Samaras' meetings with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on Friday and French President Francois Hollande in Paris on Saturday, he strongly dismissed the idea of a Greek euro exit, arguing it would damage Greece and endanger the eurozone.
Juncker stressed however that Greece should fulfill its obligations and carry out the pledged spending cuts and structural reforms to slash deficits and return to growth, while asking international creditors for more.
"I can't say that there will not be another program for Greece. It will depend on troika's findings ... At this juncture, I don't want to talk about a third package, because troika has to see how the second bailout can be implemented," he said, asked by media, adding that the issue of fiscal extension will have to be taken into account after the troika's review as well.
"The ball is in Greece's court. This is the last chance," the European official underlined.
In an interview with German Bild newspaper on Wednesday, Samaras called for more time as a "breathing space" to restart the economy of the debt-ridden country now in its fifth year of recession.
Under the two bailout agreements clinched with European counterparts and the IMF since 2010, Greece is kept afloat with multi-billion rescue loans in return of painful austerity measures and reforms to 2014.
However, missed targets in particular in the reform part have fuelled reactions among lenders and scenarios of an eventual Greek disorderly default and exit from the eurozone which could destabilize international markets and economies across Europe.
According to the terms of bailouts Greece needs to present to troika auditors a 11.5 billion euro package of fresh tough budget cuts for the next two years on top of waves of austerity policies introduced over the past two years.
The package is presented as a prerequisite for the release of further rescue loans to Athens, starting with a 31.5 billion euro tranche this autumn. Without it Greece faces a chaotic bankruptcy and a possible exit from the European common currency zone within weeks. (1 euro= 1.247 U.S. dollars)