EU, IMF close to technical agreement on terms of bailout for Greece

13:22, April 10, 2010      

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Deputy finance ministers and central bank officials of the member-countries of the eurozone in Brussels and International Monetary Fund (IMF) officials in Washington on Friday were close to reaching a technical deal on the terms of granting a loan to Greece, according to Greek media report.

If Greece eventually decides to ask for financial help to overcome its economic woes, IMF is ready to start cooperation even during this weekend on a basis of standard conditions for assistance given to countries in need, Greek television channels reported Friday based on IMF and EU sources.

Since the European "safety net" agreed at the EU summit on March 25 still does not function yet, IMF would be the first to give a loan to Athens reaching up to 10 billion euros (13.384 billion U.S. dollars), Greek media said.

The total sum could be around 25 billion euros (33,46 billion dollars) at interest rates between 3.5 and 5 percent which are much lower than the ones Greek bonds get lately in international markets, according to the unconfirmed reports.

If EU member states confirm the technical deal with a political agreement, the EU Commission and the European Central Bank will make precise suggestions after consultations with Athens and will follow closely the whole procedure, as European partners will contribute to the rescue plan.

In case the terms include a new package of austerity measures for Greek citizens, as expected, analysts in Athens note that more strikes and protests will follow.

There is still no official comment on the reports by the Greek government.

On Friday noon Greek Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou repeated that there is no need yet to activate the EU-IMF support mechanism for Greece.

Source: Xinhua


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