Published On: Tue, Jun 2nd, 2015

Crisis Talks In Berlin As Greek Debt Deadline Looms


Greece has an outstanding which at current must be paid back by the end of June.

With a looming €300m (£215m) payment from Greece to the IMF, the heads of the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund attended talks in Berlin aiming to reach a deal with Athens.

The heads joined European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande.

Angela Merkel, Christine Lagarde , Francois Hollande and Mario Draghi began an emergency meeting in Berlin yesterday at 9.30pm however the Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras was not present.

The IMF is concerned Greece does not have the capital available to pay back their outstanding loan and could default on the debt, meaning the country could ultimately leave the eurozone.

Greece has four payments outstanding which total €1.5bn and the first is due on Friday however there is an option for all payments to be consolidated and paid towards the end of June. Greece would have to inform the IMF if it chose this method however it hasn’t yet done so.

The country is still in talks with international creditors over the release of €7.2bn in remaining bailout funds.

The fact that International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde and ECB president Mario Draghi both attended the Berlin meeting underlines the seriousness of the talks.

The IMF, European Commission and ECB are demanding further austerity reforms in exchange of the funds which Alexis Tsipras, the Greek Prime Minister is refusing.

“It is due to the insistence of certain institutional actors on submitting absurd proposals and displaying a total indifference to the recent democratic choice of the Greek people,” he wrote in the French newspaper Le Monde on Sunday.

Following Mondays emergency meeting a Greek official told Reuters that their government had not yet received any proposal from the IMF, ECB and European Commission after the meeting. The official did say Greece would make Friday’s payment if it a preliminary agreement can be put in place.

Some spectators believe the International Monetary Fund is planning further debt relief for the pressured country whilst urging the government cut pensions provisions and bring forward labour market reforms.

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