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The talks between Greece and the lenders have stalled

12 November 2013 / 22:11:01  GRReporter
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The second meeting of the members of the supervisory Troika ended shortly before 8:00 pm despite the expectations that it would continue until late at night. The issues on the negotiating table were the hole in the state budget for 2014, the pace of revenue and the medium-term budget framework for 2015-2016.

So far, it is unclear whether the representatives of the lenders will return to Athens after the Eurogroup meeting, which will take place in Brussels on Thursday. At the same time, a senior European official stated that the negotiations would not be completed any time soon, as "The Greek authorities and the Troika are still billions of miles apart."

He excluded the probability of the decision on the next tranche of financial aid to Greece being adopted at the two upcoming meetings of the finance ministers of the euro zone member states on 14 and 22 November. According to him, the most likely scenario is for the inspection of the progress of the recovery programme to not have been completed by the next meeting of the Eurogroup in December.

The European representative added that Greece’s progress is very slow and that the decisions on the future of the support for the country may be adopted after the "ski vacation" which is in February in Western Europe.

In conclusion, the European official said that Athens should not expect the granting of the tranche of 1 billion euro, which has been uncertain since July, if it does not fulfil all of its commitments.

Earlier, another incident between members of the supervisory Troika and a Greek citizen had provoked various comments in the Greek media. The incident happened before their morning meeting with the leadership of the Ministry of Finance. One of the lenders’ representatives hit a passing motorcyclist with the door of the car he was getting out of.

He opened the door without looking back and the man fell down on the sidewalk. The incident ended without any injuries.

Minutes later, employees of the Ministry of Finance who have been included in the mobility programme, booed the inspectors. The first meeting, which was attended by Minister of Finance Yiannis Stournaras and Minister of Development Kostis Hatzidakis, ended shortly after 1:30 pm.

It discussed the issue of liberalizing the auctions for mortgaged houses whose owners are not paying the loans for them. According to sources, it is expected that the Greek side will sign an agreement on this matter between 10 and 15 December.

Commenting on the statement by the European representative, Yiannis Stournaras said, "Whoever made this statement, on condition of anonymity, does not reflect the creative talks we have had with the Troika. We are not miles apart but metres apart." However, the Minister of Finance did not comment on the milestones and on the amount which the measures should save.

Tags: PoliticsSupervisory TroikaTalksEuropean representativeTrancheEurogroup
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