Greece, troika talks halted temporarily

Representatives of the so-called troika of international lenders have temporary halted their talks with Greek officials, saying the negotiations related to new bailout tranche are set to be resumed in near future.

œTo allow completion of technical work, policy discussions in Athens will pause, and are expected to resume in the coming weeks,” inspectors from the European Commission (EC), European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in a joint statement on Sunday, following four hours of talks with Greek Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras.

œIn the meantime, contacts will continue between staff and the Greek authorities,” the statement added.

Moreover, on Saturday, experts from Greece™s international lenders met Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras.

Following the meeting, the country™s finance minister said, œThe negotiations will continue.”

The talks will decide about the continuation of financial aid to the country and a 1 billion euro ($1.35 billion) bailout installment to be paid to Greece in October.

The talks will also focus on the liquidation of Greece’s defense industry, as called for by the European Union, as well as reduction of 12,500 civil servant posts and the ongoing privatization program.

The IMF has predicted that the country would need 4.4 billion euros in 2014 and another 6.5 billion in 2015 to avert bankruptcy.

Greece has been at the epicenter of the eurozone debt crisis and is experiencing its sixth year of recession, while harsh austerity measures have left tens of thousands of people without jobs.

The country™s unemployment is currently above 27 percent, banks are in a shaky position, and pensions and salaries have been slashed.

The European financial crisis began in early 2008. Insolvency now threatens heavily debt-ridden countries such as Greece, Portugal, Italy, Ireland, and Spain.

The worsening debt crisis has forced EU governments to adopt harsh austerity measures and tough economic reforms, which have triggered massive demonstrations in many European countries.


Copyright: Press TV