Greece needs rescue deal by June 18, Greek ministers say

Greece needs to clinch a deal with its EU-IMF creditors at a eurozone meeting on June 18 to prevent it from defaulting on its debt, two ministers said on Friday.

Defence Minister Panos Kammenos said in an interview with Mega channel that a deal “will come about by June 18 or never”.

Minister of State Alekos Flambouraris, a close associate of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, told state television ERT meanwhile: “I hope (an agreement) comes very soon, on June 18, when the Eurogroup convenes.”

Greece needs to clinch a deal to unlock 7.2 billion euros in bailout funds by the end of June before its current EU-IMF rescue programme expires, leaving the cash-strapped country with no means of support against a looming default.

The five-month talks are stuck on disagreement between Greece and its creditors on its future budget goals, economic reforms and tax revenue.

Athens is facing mounting pressure, with the IMF saying Thursday there remains big gaps between both sides and the EU warning the Greeks to stop “gambling” with the possibility of default and a messy exit from the eurozone.