Crisis: Greece, government mulls three-stage strategy

Meetings focusing on two-year extension to fiscal adjustment

17 August, 11:29

(ANSAmed) - ATHENS, AUGUST 17 - Greek government sees three stages in its negotiating strategy in view of its key contracts and consultations with the country's European partners in the next two weeks, according to daily Kathimerini, while the ultimate goal is for Greece to obtain a two-year extension to the timetable for bringing down its deficit below 3% of GDP and seek an additional funding package for the extra period. Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras will probably accompany Prime Minister Antonis Samaras in his meetings with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin (on August 24) and French President Francois Hollande in Paris the following day.

The three-stage plan provides for: I) The presentation of a credible package for saving 11.5 billion euros over the next two years. The list of measures for the savings is reportedly almost complete. Ministers will hold intensive meetings over the next few days in order to finalize the package. II) Approval of the disbursement of the next bailout installment of 31 billion euros. Barring any upsets regarding the package, the issue will be discussed at a September 14 Eurogroup meeting. Approval primarily depends on a positive report by the troika of international creditors the International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank and European Commission. Stournaras is expected to argue that a positive response by Europe toward the package should put an end to speculation of a Greek exit from the eurozone and improve the investment climate in the local economy. III) The two-year extension to the fiscal stabilization program. Sources say the government has drawn up a scenario for the development of the deficit and GDP if the extension is granted, aiming to show that the plan is realistic and will lead to better results. (ANSAmed).

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