Greece's reform efforts are off to a good start but challenges remain, European and International Monetary Fund officials said after an assessment of the country's efforts to resolve its debt crisis.

A joint statement from the European Central Bank, International Monetary Fund and European Commission said spending had been kept below budget limits and the contraction in the economy was in line with projections.

Our overall assessment is that the programme has made a strong start, the statement said.

The end-June quantitative performance criteria have all been met, led by a vigorous implementation of the fiscal programme, and important reforms are ahead of schedule. However, important challenges and risks remain.

Dubbed the 'troika', officials from the three institutions have been assessing Greek progress in cutting the deficit and pushing labour market and other reforms before releasing the second tranche of their 110 billion euro ($145 billion) programme. (Reporting by Krista Hughes; Editing by Susan Fenton)