Greek bailout talks to be wrapped up by Aug 20-govt spokeswoman

(AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris). In this photo taken on Thursday, July 16, 2015, yachts docked at the marina of Agios Kosmas used for sailing events during Athens’ 2004 Olympic games.


Greece’s government has “no intention” of calling early elections while in the throes of finalising a deal with its eurozone partners on a new bailout, a spokeswoman for Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said Monday, AFP reports. Tsipras reshuffled his Cabinet o… Non-payment of either would have derailed Greece’s latest bailout request.

“Our business has already been impacted by the crisis over the past years”. “We used to deliver to offices nearby but a lot of them have closed”.

In downtown Athens, people queued up in an orderly fashion as the banks unlocked their doors at 8am. “That era is over”.

The Value-added tax (VAT) jumped up from 13 percent to 23 percent on a wide range of goods and services, although the tax on medicines, books and newspapers eased from 6.5 percent to 6.0 percent.

Popular services were also hit by the new taxes: restaurants and cafes, funeral homes, taxis, ferries, exam-cramming schools and language schools.

After the Greek Parliament passed an agreement Thursday to seek a third bailout, the ECB raised its emergency funding to the cash-strapped Greek banks. Of Syriza’s 149 members of parliament, 32 voted against the bill and six abstained. There are also restrictions on opening new accounts or activating dormant ones.

The government also needs to make a 4.2 billion euro payment to the European Central Bank today.

The worldwide Monetary Fund (IMF) says Greece is no longer in default on its loans, after Athens made overdue debt payments to the financial organization. In return for the cash, successive governments have had to enact harsh austerity measures to try to get public finances into shape.

Paying off the IMF and European Central Bank will give Greece some breathing space but the country will need bailout funds to meet upcoming debts.

The heads of the centrist To Potami party and the socialist Pasok party both said they would back the Tsipras government over the bailout accord but demanded a clear “road map” from the prime minister about what would happen after that.

The money is part of a third bailout for Greece over which negotiations are expected to last several weeks.

There is no possibility of them thriving for months and even possibly years.

Acceptance of the bailout terms that meant the banks could reopen marked a turnaround for Tsipras after months of hard talks and a referendum that rejected a less stringent deal proposed by the lenders. The Greek government kept the daily cash withdrawal limit at 60 euros (65 USA dollars) but added a weekly limit of 420 euros (455 dollars) that will be available beginning Sunday.

The Athens Stock Exchange, whose operation was suspended June 29, remained closed Monday and it was unclear when it would resume trading.


On July 22, the parliament will vote on the next set of reforms, which are expected to be approved with the support of pro-euro opposition parties, as it happened last week. Other reforms, such as the phasing out early pensions, raising the minimum retirement age to 67, and phasing out preferential tax treatment for farmers, probably will be discussed, but not voted on because of widespread dissent.

Greek bailout talks to be wrapped up by Aug 20-govt spokeswoman