Europe Crisis averted in Greek bailout

Crisis averted in Greek bailout

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras

(AA) – After a marathon session of negotiations lasting until 2 a.m. in Brussels, Greece has agreed to present a more comprehensive list of economic reforms to fulfill its responsibilities under the European creditors’ bailout plan. 

The meeting, which began late on Thursday, was an emergency meeting of Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who heads the Eurogroup of 19 member nations, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, French President Francois Hollande and European Central Bank governor Mario Draghi.

Tsipras called the meeting after the Greek parliament, on Wednesday, passed a humanitarian aid law involving spending that was not authorized by the Eurogroup’s bailout plan. Protests from the creditors led Tsipras to call an emergency meeting with the political leaders of three creditor nations.

Greece is entirely dependent on the European Central Bank for emergency loans to provide funds to keep the country’s banks and government solvent.  

Following the talks, Merkel warned that further emergency aid to Greece would not be forthcoming unless the government began implementing the economic reforms imposed by the bailout plan. Further reform proposals would have to be vetted by the Eurogroup, and would be subject to rapid implementation.

Merkel had predicted, in a press conference before the meeting, that a full-scale breakthrough was not expected, but, at the end, both sides seem to feel that progress was made.

On Monday, Tsipras will travel to Berlin to see Merkel again.

The completion of Greece’s €240 billion ($256.43 billion) bailout, originally arranged by the EU, the ECB and the International Monetary Fund with Greece’s previous government, and which the current government has agreed to fulfill, depends on agreement between creditors and the Greek government on economic reforms.

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