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Greece rejects talk of third bailout after IMF official's claim

Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras has rejected suggestions that Greece needs a third bailout after the country’s representative to the International Monetary Fund, Thanos Catsambas, told the Wall Street Journal that more financing or a second debt restructuring would be needed.

“Greece will require additional financing, which may take the form either of official-sector involvement or of additional loans, hopefully on more favorable terms,» Catsambas told the newspaper.

Stournaras sought to quickly quash the suggestion. «The country's positions are formulated by the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister,» Stournaras told Reuters.

Greece is currently trying to agree a new package of austerity measures with the troika in order to qualify for its latest bailout installment, worth 31.5 billion euros.

It has not entered any discussions about a third bailout package or a restructuring of debt held by the European Central Bank and its eurozone partners.

However, there Greece may face a potential problem with the IMF, which requires the country’s debt to be on a path to sustainability in order to release its part of the loan tranche. The fund deems sustainable as being Greece’s public debt as being 120 percent of GDP by 2020.

IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said that the Washington-based organization was focused on the current Greek program, rather than a new one.

However, Rice suggested that Athens could be given more time to meet its bailout targets. Greece is trying to convince the troika to allow it one or two more years to complete its fiscal adjustment.

"There are good arguments to extend the period for Greece to implement its fiscal adjustment,” Rice said, according to AFP.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday September 13, 2012 (18:06)  
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