BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Euro zone finance ministers promised cheaper loans, longer maturities and a more flexible rescue fund on Monday to help Greece and other EU debtors in a bid to stop financial contagion engulfing Italy and Spain.
Reuters - Euro zone finance ministers promised cheaper loans, longer maturities and a more flexible rescue fund to help Greece and other EU debtors in a bid to stop financial contagion engulfing Italy and Spain.
Brussels (AFP) - Greece goes into talks with its eurozone partners on Monday demanding changes to a massive international bailout which could lead to its exit from the single currency bloc and into the unknown.
Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy were more than a little ticked off when Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi showed up for the Cannes summit "empty handed". In response. Merkozy proposed a new Troika for Italy and sent inspectors to pour over Italy's books.
Brussels (AFP) - Eurozone leaders were thrashing out a Greek bailout deal through the early hours on Monday after Athens received an ultimatum to accept harsh reforms or be forced to leave the single currency.
Greece reached an accord with creditors on the terms of a third bailout, paving the way for national parliaments to vote on the deal before an Aug. 20 payment falls due to the European Central Bank.
After almost two weeks of intensive talks, the four institutions representing Greece’s creditors — the ECB, the International Monetary Fund, the European Commission and the European Stability Mechanism rescue fund — forged an initial agreement on measures from pension changes to taxes that will unlock about 85 billion euros (US$94 billion) in funds for Greece.
Greece’s historic referendum is in the books and confusion now reigns in Europe and in stock and bond markets across the globe. Put simply, no one — not the politicians, not the analysts, not the traders — has any idea what happens next because there simply is no precedent for a voter-supported exit from the EMU.
BRUSSELS — Within minutes of eurozone finance ministers reaching a deal to cut Greece’s debt late on Monday, commentators on Twitter were dismissing it as another exercise in “kicking the can down the road”.
To an extent that is true. Under the agreement, the euro zone and the International Monetary Fund will give Greece two more years to reach its budget goals and will find another 44-billion euros (US$57-billion) to keep the country afloat in the meantime.
Euro-area finance ministers said Greek officials must pick up the pace of negotiations to unlock more of bailout funds, as the country risks running out of cash.
“We have to stop wasting time and really start talks seriously,” said Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who heads the finance ministers’ group. “We’ve lost over two weeks — in which very little progress has been made. The real talks haven’t started yet. There has been no implementation.”
Global markets continued to tumble on Tuesday as investor worried about a lack of details from eurozone finance ministers on more help for Greece and other EU debtors and the growing threat of contagion in Italy and Spain.