ATHENS, Greece, July 27 (UPI) -- Prime Minister George Papandreou said Wednesday his latest deal with creditors has saved Greece's place in Europe.
"We have confirmed our participation at the core of the European Union," he told his Cabinet, touting the rescue package negotiated in Brussels last week, Ekathimerini.com reported.
Euro zone leaders have agreed to easier lending terms, and private investors will exchange Greek bonds for longer maturities at lower interest rates.
"Armed with the tough decisions that we made and the conviction that we shall see them through, we accomplished everything that the opposition accused us of failing to negotiate, and in fact more than that," the prime minister said in a swipe at the New Democracy party.
Papandreou said the time has come to carry out reforms that have been stalled for decades and stem the "deficit hemorrhage."
The premier also offered to meet with leaders of taxi drivers, allied with his own Pan-Hellenic Socialist Movement, who are striking to stop government moves opening their business to more competition.
Papandreou appealed to drivers not to disrupt traffic and tourism. Some 8,000 cabbies protested in front of Parliament Tuesday.