Technical talks begin amid talk of more measures


Contact between the Greek government and technical teams representing Greece’s lenders began in Athens on Monday, although the heads of the missions are not expected in the capital until Thursday.

“As you know, the first discussions on a technical level have begun and will continue with much more intensity tomorrow,” said Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos. “We will follow to the letter the agreement reached at the Eurogroup and the Euro Summit. We are proceeding in an organized manner and we hope everything will go well.”

Greece and its lenders have agreed that the bulk of the technical talks will take place in the hotel where the inspectors are staying. The visiting officials will be allowed to visit the General Accounting Office, the Finance Ministry and the Economy Ministry. The lenders want to be able to visit other ministries as well but the Greek side is hoping this will not be necessary.

With the logistics out of the way for now, the next issue to create friction is whether Greece will have to pass a third bill containing prior actions before completing the agreement with the institutions.

European Commission spokeswoman Mina Andreeva suggested that Athens would have to do more in the coming weeks.

“More reforms are expected from the Greek authorities to allow for a swift disbursement under the ESM [European Stability Mechanism],” she said at a briefing yesterday. “This is also what is being discussed right now.”