EWG decides on whether 2-bln will be disbursed to Greece
The government maintains that it has already covered 90% of the prior actions that European officials demanded, however EU creditors doubt that Greece has voted through even half of its pledges. The embattled government is continuing negotiations with creditors. At risk are more foreclosures (as eyed by creditors), VAT to private education (as considered by the Greek government) and the administration of pharmacies following the reaction of chemists that are meeting on Thursday to consider further actions following a 24-hour strike on Tuesday.
The Euroworking Group (EWG) is meeting on Thursday to consider whether the Greek government has kept its pledge for tough reforms. A negative review would mean that the disbursement of a 2-billion-euro tranche benchmarked for Greece could be delayed. Greece may have to wait until the Eurogroup meeting on November 9 before the funds for Greece are sanctioned, or worst still, the matter may not be resolved until the end of November. There is an imminent danger that the money that had been expected by the end of the week may not be forthcoming until next week.
On its part, the government is submitting two more draft bills on Thursday in the hope of swaying European officials. The draft bill for the recapitalization of banks will be voted through fast track procedures after being delayed for half a month. Next week, more prior actions concerning energy and tax restructuring will also pass through parliament.
The Ministry of Finance is already looking at alternative options for meeting its obligations, bearing in mind the state’s liquidity problems. Oustanding debts since the start of the year are already more than 5 billion euros.
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