Greek Bailout Talks Reach an Impasse; Finance Minister Heads to Brussels

Greek PM Lucas Papademos speaks to German Chancellor Angela Merkel ahead of EU Summit in December
Greek PM Lucas Papademos- 5 hours ago

*Breaking news: Greek leaders finally agreed to a list of austerity measures, the first step toward securing a €130 billion bailout that Greece so desperately needs.*

Greek PM Lucas Papademos failed to gain support from Greece’s coalition political leaders to reach a deal with officials from the EU and IMF over Greece’s proposed  austerity measures.

An agreement over Greece’s austerity reform plans is necessary to assure Greece’s financiers from the EU and IMF that Greece has fully met the required conditions to provide Greece with the 130 billion bailout payment which is due later in March to avert a Greek default.

The agreement, which would result in sizeable losses for bondholders, is aimed at helping to reduce Greece’s debts to 120% of GDP by 2020, down from 160% currently.

Greek far-right leader Georgios Karatzaferis emerged from the all night coalition talks scornful of Greece’s creditors for placing unreasonable pressure on the Greek government to implement more painful cuts to public spending.

“I made clear my intentions right at the start of the meeting. I cannot in one hour sign up to a plan which will affect the country for 40 or 50 years with receiving legal assurances that the measures are going to get the country out of its impasse,”  Karatzaferis told reporters.

The main area of contention which caused the talks to reach an impasse and break down was over a 300 million cut to Greece’s state pensions.  

However, Bloomberg reports that Greek government officials claim that Greek leaders have been granted 15 more days to fill the 300 million void in cuts. 

Greek Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos will head to Brussels on Thursday where Eurozone finance ministers are scheduled to meet later in the afternoon. It was widely expected that a reached agreement would have been accomplished in advance of today’s meeting along with  a firm commitment to a make budget savings worth 3.3 billion euros ($4.4 billion) this year.



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