Friday, June 5, 2015

Greek debt crisis: IMF confirms delay in Greek repayments until end of June, averting default


Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras Photo: Greece has reached a deal to bundle four debt repayments into one. (Reuters: Alkis Konstantinidis)

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The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has confirmed that Greece will be bundling four debt repayments due in June at the end of the month, averting the possibility of a Greek default today.

"The Greek authorities have informed the Fund today that they plan to bundle the country's four June payments into one, which is now due on June 30," IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said, citing rules allowing debtor countries to regroup "multiple principal payments falling due in a calendar month".

Greece's first 300 million euro ($439 million) payment had been due on Friday, with cash-strapped Athens slated to hand another 1.3 billion euros over on later dates in June.

The move comes at a critical time for Greece and its IMF, European Union and European Central Bank creditors, as they push for a breakthrough in four-month negotiations to unlock 7.2 billion euros ($10.5 billion) in bailout funds Athens desperately needs to honour debt payments.

With divisions still remaining on reform and austerity conditions demanded of Athens in exchange for the funds, worries of a possible default have risen with the flurry of debt repayments looming.

"We used an option that IMF rules offer us, and which give us additional time for negotiating," a Greek government source said.

Greece has presented a 47-page blueprint on how to overhaul the struggling Greek economy without resorting to harsh austerity measures and cuts.

Creditors, meanwhile, have tabled a rival plan drawn up without Greece at a meeting in Berlin on Monday attended by the leaders of Germany and France.

Discussions that have taken place throughout the week are slated to resume on Friday.


Greek debt crisis: IMF confirms delay in Greek repayments until end of June, averting default - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)