Eurozone announces next tranche of Greece bailout

Elias Hubbard
March 13, 2018

"The Eurozone rescue fund will issue a new 5.7 billion Euro loan to Athens in the second half of March after Eurozone parliaments complete approval procedures", said Mario Centeno at a press conference after a regular Eurozone finance ministers meeting. Sources suggest that an effort will also be made to avoid the adoption of precautionary credit line as this will need approval in several Eurozone member-state parliaments and will nearly certainly be accompanied by an adjustment program.

Eurozone finance ministers decided on Monday that the third review of Greece's bailout program is concluded and the €5.7 billion sub-tranche is to be disbursed by the end of March.

Ireland is among a group of like-minded Baltic states and the Netherlands, nicknamed the Hanseatic League, which have urged restraint, notably on the "communitisation" or transfer to commission control of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), which provides financial assistance, by way of loans, to euro zone countries or as new capital to banks in difficulty.

"I am convinced that Greece will do all the other tasks to finish the program successfully", said Mario Centeno.

For a "smooth" and "sustainable" exit from the program, Brussels appears to be placing great emphasis on the creation of a cash buffer of about 16-20 billion euros by August, with which Greece is expected to be able to meet its debt obligations until the beginning of 2020.

"That is a condition for any additional debt relief", he added and expected Greece to deliver in April a long-term growth strategy which will be a crucial element of the post-program framework. Worldwide leaders are now debating how to ensure the country makes its exit on a sustainable footing.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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