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Bailout talks to resume on Tuesday, says government spokesman

TAGS: Politics, Economy

The government on Thursday sought to set out a roadmap for the return of economic stability to Greece, with its spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos announcing that foreign auditors will return to Athens next Tuesday and that a dragging bailout review will be completed by a Eurogroup summit on May 22.

Tzanakopoulos said bailout talks would resume next week with the aim of finalizing the additional measures and “countermeasures” agreed with creditors, and drafting a “complementary memorandum of cooperation as well as a memorandum with the IMF,” referring to the International Monetary Fund. The measures and additional agreements will then be put to a vote in Greece’s Parliament by mid-May so that the “final stamp” can be delivered at the May 22 Eurogroup.

Tzanakopoulos said the IMF may finance Greece’s current bailout, its third since 2010, with a small amount for one year. “What is under discussion is a small IMF funding program, which will last for one year and end at the same time as the ESM program, in August 2018,” Tzanakopoulos said, referring to the European Stability Mechanism.

The spokesman insisted that speculation about the possible need for additional economic reforms in 2018 was “groundless,” noting that the measures Greek MPs will vote on next month relate to 2019.

On the critical issue of debt relief, Tzanakopoulos said officials were seeking “a determination of medium-term measures that are general enough so as not to cause a political problem in Germany but specific enough... so as to satisfy the IMF in the effort that is under way to produce a positive debt sustainability report.”

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