Greece and creditors agree to extend bailout package

EU/IMF loans will be extended by another four months under condition Athens provides list of reform measures.

    Greece and its eurozone creditors have agreed to extend the country's financial rescue package after a series of negotiations in Brussels, more than a week before the $273b EU/IMF bailout programme was due to expire.

    Jeroen Dijsselbloem, the eurozone's top official, confirmed on Friday that a deal that will extend Greece's loans by another four months has been reached.

    In return, Greece has committed to not pursue any "unilateral" measures that may affect the country's budget targets.

    Greece has also committed to provide a list of reforms based on the country's current bailout programme for assessment on Monday.

    Dijsselbloem says Friday's agreement was a "first step in this process of rebuilding trust" between Greece and its euro partners and allows for a strategy to get the country "back on track."

    The review will be carried out on Tuesday by representatives from the European Central Bank, International Monetary Fund and European Commission.

    "The institutions will provide a first view whether this is sufficiently comprehensive to be a valid starting point for a successful conclusion of the (bailout) review," according to the eurozone statement on Greece.

    If the institutions don't think the proposals are enough, Greece would be facing financial trouble again. Its bailout ends after Feb. 28.

    This list will then be further detailed and agreed upon by the end of April.

    Dijsselbloem said Friday's agreement was a "first step in this process of rebuilding trust" between Greece and its euro partners and allows for a strategy to get the country "back on track."

    "Trust leaves quicker than it comes," he said.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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