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Eurozone reaches Greek bailout deal


13:41, February 21, 2012

French Finance Minister Francois Baroin, Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos and Greek Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos (L-R) talk during the Eurogroup finance ministers meeting in Brussels, capital of Belgium, Feb 20, 2012. Eurozone ministers are expected to approve a second bailout program for Greece. (Xinhua/Thierry Monasse)

BRUSSELS, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- Finance ministers from the eurozone reached a Greek bailout plan early Tuesday, agreeing on measures to reduce the country's debt level to 120.5 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) by 2020.

Under the rescue package, which was clinched after lengthy 12 hours of talks, Greece will receive extra bailout loans of 130 billion euros (170 billion U.S. dollars) to avoid a debt default on a bond repayment in March, eurozone officials here said.

Earlier, eurozone officials had indicated that they would approve a second bailout program for Greece after Athens had agreed to all the terms demanded by international creditors.

"I would like to assume that we can reach final and concluding negotiations today (Monday)," Eurogroup head Jean-Claude Juncker said as he arrived for a meeting of eurozone finance ministers on Monday.

"The Greek side has fulfilled many preparatory efforts we had demanded. We have to conclude today, there's no more time to waste," Juncker, who is also Luxembourg's prime minister, told reporters.

Nevertheless, the meeting was prolonged into the early hours of Tuesday.


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