Friday Jan 30, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
16o C
13o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Stournaras says Greece won’t need third rescue as recovery gains

David Tweed & Marcus Bensasson

Greece, where the euro-area debt crisis erupted more than four years ago, won’t require a third international bailout if its economy continues to revive, according to Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras.

With euro-zone finance ministers converging on Athens today, Stournaras said favorable economic developments will ease bond-market access, with a first issue expected in the first half of the year.

“Up to the moment, we don’t see a need for a third bailout,” Stournaras said yesterday in an interview with Bloomberg Television in Athens. “I think the program money, along with the better performance on the fiscal side, are enough to cover us fully for the next 12 months, and under certain conditions that could continue up to well inside 2016.”

The Athens Stock Exchange rose 0.6 percent to 1335.74 yesterday, while Greece’s 10-year bond yield fell 10 basis points to 6.57 percent, the lowest since mid-2010.

Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has staked his credibility on tapping bond markets this year for the first time since before Greece’s first bailout in 2010. If the European Union’s statistics agency confirms that the government posted a 2013 budget surplus before interest costs, Greece will be in line for more debt relief, Stournaras said.

Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem said Greece’s international creditors will decide after the summer on possible further aid, including extending the maturity of existing loans from the country’s 240 billion-euro ($331 billion) bailouts. Greece’s economic situation is improving, and this has an impact on calculations of the country’s debt sustainability, Dijsselbloem said on March 30.

Greece posted a current account surplus last year for the first time since the Bank of Greece’s records began in 1948. The European Commission forecasts gross domestic product will increase 0.6 percent this year after a six-year slump.

Greece will raise about 2 billion euros from state asset sales this year, Stournaras said. The economy will also benefit once lenders start expanding credit to the economy in a “matter of months,” he said.

Samaras’s majority in Greece’s 300-seat chamber was whittled down to just two after he expelled a lawmaker from his party in the early hours of yesterday morning for voting against a bill needed for the country to continue receiving bailout funds. The legislation includes changes to the framework for banks to raise capital.

Lawmakers passed the bill including hundreds of economic reforms, from changing the way banks are recapitalized to allowing pharmacists to open shops inside supermarkets. The final bill watered down a plan to allow some stores to open on Sunday to just three cities.

As a result, euro-area finance ministers may decide to unlock more than 8 billion euros from Greece’s 2012 rescue package, the nation’s second since the crisis began. The tranche also reflects Greece’s progress on privatizing state-owned assets and reducing outstanding debt.

Greece’s bailouts earmarked 50 billion euros for recapitalizing the banks, about a fifth of which remains unused. The Bank of Greece has said the country’s lenders will need to raise an additional 6.38 billion euros of capital after a review of troubled loans on their balance sheets. Two lenders, Piraeus Bank SA and Alpha Bank SA, raised a combined 2.95 billion euros from foreign investors last week.

“I’m quite confident that the whole of the capitalization needs will be covered by the private markets,” Stournaras said. Strong investor interest in capital-raising by Piraeus and Alpha Bank show that there is “huge appetite” for Greek banks in markets, he added.

Eurobank Ergasias SA, the only bank that is controlled by the state following last year’s round of capital injections, is still seeking to raise 2.95 billion euros from private investors. National Bank of Greece SA, the country’s biggest lender, has said it will cover its 2.18 billion-euro capital shortfall by selling non-core assets.

While his “initial tasks and targets” in the job of finance minister have been completed, his continuing in the role “depends on the will of the prime minister,” he said. “I’m finance minister now,” he said when asked if he was interested in becoming a central banker at some time.

[Bloomberg]

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday April 1, 2014 (09:43)  
Greece to cancel gas utility sale, opposes Canadian gold mine
Berlin: Greek aid extension only makes sense if Athens upholds reforms
Pimco says Greek bonds illiquid, volatile until accord reached
Draghi deflation challenge underlined as prices plunge by record
Greece sets up cash crunch for March telling EU it’s over
Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said Greece won’t seek an extension of its bailout agreement, setting the government on course to enter March without a financial backstop for the first tim...
Greece warned against reversing bailout deals
The head of the Eurogroup warned on Friday that Greece could not ignore its international obligations, after a first meeting with the new anti-austerity government which wants to renegotiate...
Inside News
SOCCER
Olympiakos draws AEK in Cup quarterfinals
The dream draw of Olympiakos vs AEK in the quarterfinal materialized on Friday, as two of the capital's three giants will face off in a two-leg tie for a place in the semifinals of the Greek...
BASKETBALL
Below-par Olympiakos succumbs to Efes
The winning streak of Olympiakos in the second group stage of the Euroleague ended on Thursday in Turkey, as Anadolu Efes outclassed the Reds in the second half to win 84-70. Olympiakos had ...
Inside Sports
INTERVIEW
SYRIZA must come up with ‘pragmatic solutions,’ Schulz tells Kathimerini
“SYRIZA must realize that it is now the Greek government, not a party running an election campaign,” European Parliament President Martin Schulz, the first European official to visit Greece ...
COMMENTARY
Strange haste
The members of the new government must have a lot of confidence in themselves. Several days before announcing his program, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his cabinet have opened up a mult...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Greece sets up cash crunch for March telling EU it’s over
2. Greece warned against reversing bailout deals
3. Germany rejects notion of Greek debt write-off
4. Eurogroup chief warns Greece against ´ignoring´ deals done under bailout
5. New Greek PM to visit Cyprus on first foreign trip
6. No plan for when Greece´s bailout ends, Dijsselbloem says
more news
Today
This Week
1. SYRIZA must come up with ‘pragmatic solutions,’ Schulz tells Kathimerini
2. Why Greece went left while Europe turns to right
3. Capital flees Greece at fastest pace since 2011
4. Greek government's signals very mixed, ECB's Jazbec says
5. Monastiraki restaurant fire prompts panic, restricted before spread
6. EU's Schulz: Greece should follow EU line on Russia
Today
This Week
1. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
2. SYRIZA heads for historic victory but without majority
3. Greek Elections 2015 | LIVE
4. Greek Elections 2015: The day after | LIVE
5. SYRIZA's win will test institutions
6. Poll shows SYRIZA leading ND by 4 pct
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.