Troika review in Athens unaffected by Paris meeting

A meeting between troika and Greek government officials in Paris at the beginning of September does not mean that representatives of Greece’s lenders will not then travel to Athens to carry out the fifth review of the country’s economic adjustment program, sources in Brussels clarified Tuesday.

Speaking a day after it emerged that the Paris talks would be held between September 3 and 5, a European Commission official told Kathimerini on condition of anonymity that the meeting would focus on preparing the ground for troika inspectors to return to Athens to launch their review in mid-September.

Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis will lead a team of Greek ministers that will hold talks with representatives from the Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund in the French capital.

“The preliminary meeting in Paris does not replace the full troika evaluation,” the Commission official told Kathimerini.

The talks will be held in France following a request that came directly from Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, who believes this will help avoid political tension being ratcheted up in Greece.

If Greece has met its bailout pledges, it is expected that the troika will wrap up its review in early October. This would pave the way for discussions about possible tax cuts and further debt relief.

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