Eurogroup to Hold New Meeting as Greece Talks Stall

EU | June 25, 2015, Thursday // 07:52|  views

Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis at the start of the Eurogroup meeting at the European Council in Brussels, Belgium, June 24, 2015. EPA/BGNES

Eurozone Finance Ministers are set to reconvene on Thursday after yet another failure to decide on Greece's debt the night before.


Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem is no less tired than other EU officials, and that was yet the beginning of the Eurogroup meeting on Wednesday

Athens is facing default unless it pays a loan installment to the IMF on June 30, and inability to pay could force it out of the single currency area.

Hopes for a Wednesday agreement dimmed early in the afternoon as Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, who had presented this week a list of last-minute reform proposals to unlock billions of aid, lashed out at international creditors, writing on Twitter some of them had rejected his proposals.

Lenders from the European Union (EU), European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are at odds with Greece over taxation, the pension system and some budgetary issues.

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde warned after meeting Tsipras that Greece's plans to keep itself afloat could not be based entirely on promises to raise taxes. In her words, European creditors have to help Athens make its own debt sustainable.

She also slammed at Greece, in an interview with French magazine Challenges, accusing it of having delivered too little on its promises.

The next deadline for a deal is the new meeting which begins at 09:00 Brussels time. European leaders are pinning their hopes on a definitive agreement as early as possible so that technicalities can be arranged swiftly by end-June.

As of Thursday morning Greece is adamant it will not amend its latest proposals, which include taxes on businesses and the wealthy, savings in pensions by proceeding with previously resisted early retirement plans, and freezing pensions and public-sector wages.

If a final agreement is reached, however, this will pave the way for EUR 7.2 B in bailout funding to be disbursed.

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Tags: Alexis Tsipras, Tsipras, European Union, European Central Bank, International Monetary Fund, christine lagarde, Lagarde, greece, debt


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