Greece, eurozone gov’ts agree to resume bailout talks


Eurozone finance ministers and Greece agreed on Monday to resume negotiations over its bailout review next week, and to be concluded swiftly afterwards, a Greek government official said.

"The agreement includes the inviolable condition that was set by the Greek side for not even one euro more of austerity," the government official said.

Greece accepted to legislate reforms which would be adopted from January 1, 2019 onwards, on condition that the fiscal impact would be neutral, the official said.

Talks over Greece’s bailout had stalled over delays in reforms by Athens, and disagreements among lenders themselves on whether the International Monetary Fund would participate in the bailout, brokered in mid-2015 and worth up to 86 billion euros.

A eurozone finance minister in discussions in Brussels told Reuters: "There was no substantial discussion but an agreement for the Institutions to return. Good news under the circumstances."

The Greek official did not refer to the possibility of the IMF being part of the bailout.

The official said technocrats representing the lenders would return to Athens immediately after February 27 with a view to "concluding a staff level agreement within a few days." [Reuters]