ECONOMY

Plan for state bond transfer to the ESM

The government is examining a plan that would allow it to avoid paying the 6.7 billion euros due this summer from maturing bonds by having the debt that the European Central Bank holds resold to another entity.

Given that it is highly unlikely Athens will be able to pay the money due in July and August, the government will propose that Frankfurt sells bonds worth 27.2 billion euros, held by the ECB had in the context of its support to the bond market (SMPs), to the European Stability Mechanism.

Given that it is impossible for Greece to acquire those bonds at this stage, and as investors are showing no interest whatsoever in shouldering any Greek risks, the only solution might be the ESM, with a deal for their repayment in the long term, as in the case of the loans received from the European Financial Stability Fund (EFSF). These bonds start maturing from this year up to 2017.

That means Athens would sign a loan contract forcing it to pay the 27.2 billion euros to the ESM instead of the ECB, although it is unlikely the eurozone would accept it.