BRUSSELS (ANA/ M. Aroni) The figures for Greece's 2017 primary surplus announced by Eurostat are a sign that the unprecedented sacrifices of the Greek people are starting to pay off, European Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas said on Monday, replying to questions.

Schinas had been asked what impact the 4.2 pct of GDP primary surplus announced by Eurostat might have on upcoming talks and the implementation of precautionary fiscal measures, such as pension cuts, demanded by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and scheduled to be implemented in coming years.

"These figures are pretty evident, they mean that Greece has outperformed its fiscal target now for the third year in a row," Schinas replied. "On the future of the programme, we at the Commission are actively working with our partners to address the challenges on the post-MoU horizon for Greece, while on the significance of today's numbers I can say on behalf of the Commission that they also show that the unprecedented sacrifices of the Greek people for years now are paying off."