Eurozone finance ministers meeting in Brussels Monday are not expected to reach an agreement on concluding Greece’s bailout review or on debt relief but are set to debate some proposals for short-term debt lightening measures.
European Stability Mechanism chief Klaus Regling is to present officials with a plan for short-term debt restructuring measures that the ESM and Greece’s Public Debt Management Agency have been considering. But although the measures are expected to be approved in principle, even by countries that had been heretofore reticent such as Germany, the Eurogroup’s political approval is required before they can be implemented.
Any agreement taken Monday in Brussels is likely to fall short of such approval but a technical-level accord will pave the way for more concrete action on debt relief over the coming weeks. It will also help the International Monetary Fund to finally decide whether to join Greece’s third international bailout.
The Fund wants details about debt relief for Greece along with a staff-level agreement before committing. As the IMF has differing budget forecasts from EU officials, it also wants Athens to commit to 4.2 billion euros in extra austerity after 2018, sources say.