ECONOMY

Greece to get next aid payment

Greece will receive its next aid payment in early July, while a consensus is emerging on how to involve private bondholders in a new rescue package, European Union Economic and Monetary Commissioner Olli Rehn said on Thursday.

?We have been in very close contact with the IMF,? Rehn told Bloomberg.

?I?m confident we can conclude the review in the coming days, by Sunday, and we can thus take the decisions on the disbursement respectively in the two organizations, so this next disbursement can take place in early July.?

Greece is counting on 8.7 billion euros from Europe and 3.3 billion euros from the International Monetary Fund in July, while debate continues in European capitals over the content of a longer-term aid program.

?We will be able to avoid any default scenario,? Rehn said.

Bondholder involvement in the Greek aid package will be decided at a regular meeting of European finance ministers on July 11, he said.

?We will have to iron out the remaining differences as regards the nature of private-sector involvement? at that meeting, Rehn said.

Greek bonds stabilized on Thursday after yesterday?s drop sent repercussions through world markets. The yield on two-year Greek notes remained above 28 percent for the second day and rates on 10-year bonds rose 2 basis points to 17.75 percent.

The euro dropped to three-week lows against the dollar and yen, and stocks fell in Europe and Asia.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Thursday urged other European leaders to find a compromise on Greece’s debt crisis to stabilize the euro. Sarkozy says ?we must make these decisions now.?

He urged other EU leaders to make ?necessary compromises? to ?preserve the stability of the euro zone. Because without stability, no growth is possible.?

He was speaking Thursday at a conference of international farmers in Paris.

France’s three biggest banks are at risk of a credit downgrade because of exposure to Greek debt. European officials are talking about more aid to keep Greece from defaulting.

The Greek debt crisis will be at the center of talks between Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday.