IMF's European chief says board still wants debt relief for Greece

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund welcomes Greece's deal with European lenders for additional fiscal reforms, but specific measures on debt relief are still needed for the IMF board to consider participating, IMF European Department Director Poul Thomsen said on Tuesday.

Thomsen told reporters on a conference call that the measures, including reductions in pension benefits and tax breaks, would allow Greece to meet fiscal targets and create budget space for more targeted, growth friendly spending policies in future years.

"While we can accept that the debt relief will only be approved and delivered at the end of the program based on Greece meeting the targets under the program, we would need to assure our board already now that we have a common understanding with our European partners of what kind of measures will be needed to deliver that debt relief," Thomsen said.

(Reporting by David Lawder)