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greece bailout deal

Eurozone ministers have agreed to unlock the latest tranche of Greece’s bailout cash.

The bailout fund will disburse 8.5 billion euros to Greece, they said in a statement.

The latest tranche of the international bailout will help avert a fresh debt crisis in July when the next €7 billion euro repayment of loans becomes due.

The payment is still subject to parliamentary approvals in some countries.

IMF Director Christine Lagarde said she would propose an approval in principle to her executive board.

The International Monetary Fund wants clarity on longer-term debt relief for Greece once the current funding scheme, worth up to 86 billion euros, runs out next year.

Christine Lagarde said the IMF was ready to participate to the third bailout program for Greece after the meeting of eurozone finance ministers in Luxembourg which capped months of negotiations.

However, the IMF could join the program with a financial support “in the range of $2 billion” only after a full deal on additional measures of debt relief for Greece, she said.

Time was beginning to press for this payment. Greece has repayments on other loans due next month, which it could not otherwise have made.

The decision reflects economic policy actions already taken by Greece and the new commitment by the IMF’s managing director Christine Lagarde to recommend that her board contribute financially to this bailout.

An IMF contribution was politically important for Germany, especially to strengthen the perceived credibility of the bailout.

The eurozone group welcomed the financial and structural reforms enacted by Greece, including income tax and pension reform.

Germany’s parliament will discuss the bailout deal on June 16, finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said.

Greek finance minister Euclid Tsakalotos said the agreement would allow market access ‘in due course’.

German parliament has voted by a large majority to approve a third bailout deal for Greece.

In total 453 members of parliament voted in favor, while 113 rejected the bailout and 18 abstained.

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble earlier warned parliament that it would be “irresponsible” to oppose the €86 billion ($95 billion) package.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s centre-right conservative bloc has been divided over the deal.

Prior to the vote nearly 60 of Angela Merkel’s members of parliament had indicated they would vote against the rescue package.

In total 47 members of parliament did not attend the session.German parliament Greek bailout

Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrat (CDU) party and its Bavarian CSU allies hold 311 seats in the 631-seat Bundestag. Angela Merkel’s coalition partner, the Social Democrats, supported the deal, as did the opposition Greens.

Last month, 65 CDU/CSU politicians refused to support even starting negotiations for a third bailout.

On August 18, the parliaments of Austria, Estonia and Spain backed the bailout.

The Dutch parliament also debated the bailout on August 19, after anti-EU Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders insisted members of parliament should be recalled from their summer recess.

The vote by German parliament was the final hurdle before the first installment of the package – €13 billion – could be released, in time for Greece to repay €3.2 billion on August 20 to the European Central Bank (ECB).

Doubts remain about the Greek government’s commitment to the bailout conditions because it previously pledged to oppose austerity.

In exchange for the bailout – and keeping Greece in the euro – PM Alexis Tsipras agreed to further painful state sector cuts, including far-reaching pension reforms.

The new loans will be spread over the next three years. The first tranche of €26 billion will include €10 billion to recapitalize Greek banks.

Eurogroup has agreed a third bailout deal for Greece after the Greek parliament backed the plan.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said the deal sent a message “loud and clear” – Greece will stay in the eurozone.

The agreement demands tax rises and more tough spending cuts in return for Greece’s third bailout in five years.

The deal means new loans of up to €86 billion ($95 billion) will be made available over the next three years.

It comes at a heavy political price for Greek PM Alexis Tsipras, who has faced a rebellion in his left-wing Syriza party.

More than 40 Syriza MPs voted against him when parliament decided on the bailout agreement on Friday, after all-night talks.

Reports in Greece suggest he will seek a vote of confidence in parliament next week, bringing the prospect of snap elections closer.

Announcing the “comprehensive and ambitious reform package”, Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem said: “All the intense work of the past week has paid off.

“If implemented with determination, the deal will allow the Greek economy to return to growth.”

He added: “Of course there were differences, but we have managed to solve the last issues.”Greece bailout deal eurogroup

Jean-Claude Juncker said: “The past six months have been difficult. They have tested the patience of policy-makers and they have tested the patience of our citizens even more.

“Together, we have looked into the abyss. But today, I am glad to say that all sides have respected their commitments.”

He added: “The message of today’s Eurogroup is loud and clear: on this basis, Greece is and will irreversibly remain a member of the euro area.”

Before the first tranche of around €26 billion can be disbursed around August 20 there will have to be a series of votes in national parliaments across Europe.

Greece must repay about €3.2 billion to the European Central Bank (ECB) on August 20.

Eurogroup finance ministers also confirmed that the thorny issue of writing off some of the Greece’s debts would be considered in the autumn.

This has been a crucial demand of both Alexis Tspiras and the IMF, which says it will only contribute if there is some form of debt relief.

The Greek parliament has approved the draft details a third bailout in five years after talks that lasted through the night and well into the morning.

The new deal involves tax rises and spending cuts in return for a bailout of about €85 billion ($95 billion).

Greece’s Alexis Tsipras also survived a significant rebellion within his own Syriza party.

The terms of the bailout will be discussed by eurozone finance ministers later on Friday, August 14.

The deal received 222 votes for, 64 against and 11 abstentions.

There were 31 “No” votes from Syriza members, and 11 abstentions – the biggest rebellion within Alexis Tsipras’ party so far. The rebels represented almost a third of all Syriza’s members of parliament.

According to the Greek media, the prime minister will ask for a confidence vote before parliament in the next week.

The debate itself was preceded by hours of often angry exchanges in parliament.Alexis Tsipras Greece bailout deal

Voting started just after 09:30 local time, more than six hours after the main debate began. The debate itself had been delayed by procedural issues.

Members of parliament had to agree on the terms so that eurozone ministers could endorse the draft deal.

Greece faces an urgent deadline on August 20, when it must repay about €3.2 billion to the European Central Bank (ECB).

If Greece had failed to agree on new terms for a bailout, the ECB is likely to have stopped giving emergency funds to Greek banks.

One of Alexis Tsipras’ most vocal critics within his own party was his former ally, parliamentary speaker Zoe Konstantopoulou.

Zoe Konstantopoulou said she could not support the deal, and faced calls from Alexis Tsipras to hurry her handling of the bill. Instead, she took time to raise several concerns, delaying the timing of the debate – to the prime minister’s visible frustration.

Another Syriza member, Panagiotis Lafazanis, told Alexis Tsipras: “I feel ashamed for you. We no longer have a democracy, but a eurozone dictatorship.”

Alexis Tsipras told the parliament: “I have my conscience clear that it is the best we could achieve under the current balance of power in Europe, under conditions of economic and financial asphyxiation imposed upon us.”

Rebels have insisted the government should make good on its electoral promise to reverse spending cuts and tax rises.

In two prior votes on bailout reforms, rebels had refused to approve tax increases, pension cuts and market reforms.

Greece’s economy grew by 0.8% in Q2 2015, confounding expectations of a steep contraction.

The official figures, based on a flash estimate, also revised a reading of 0.2% negative growth in Q1 to a flat reading, showing no change in economic activity.

The reading did not break down which sectors had been most active.

The figures, provided by Greece’s Elstat agency, come as the parliament prepares to vote on new bailout plans.

The Greek government has defended the controversial new program as tough, but essential if the country is to avoid financial collapse.

The credit crisis sparked six years of recession in Greece, from which it emerged in 2014 before shrinking again.

Until these latest figures were released, Greece’s economy had been forecast to shrink again this year by between 2.1% and 2.3%.

Nikos Magginas at National Bank said it was now possible that the contraction would be less than 2%.Greece economic growth 2015

He said there were a number of sectors likely to have helped boost activity: “Some economic activity indicators in the second quarter, including consumption, industrial production and tourism, had shown particular resilience.”

Greece must repay some €3.4 billion ($3.8 billion) to the ECB by August 20. If the deal is not finalized by then, Athens may need more emergency funding.

Eurozone finance ministers are expected to meet at the weekend to endorse the draft deal.

PM Alexis Tsipras said the deal would end the country’s economic uncertainty.

The chances of the eurozone vote succeeding improved on Thursday afternoon, when Finland, which originally indicated it favored a temporary Greek exit from the euro, backed the plan.

Finland’s finance minister, Alexander Stubb, said: “We have come a long way during the summer. The future of the euro was at stake…. but now we’ve got a solution and will live with it.”

On August 12, former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis said the bailout deal was “not going to work”, because it was based on an unsustainable debt burden that the economy would be unable to produce enough to repay.

Yanis Varoufakis was removed from the talks early last month and replaced by the present finance minister, Euclid Tsakalotos.

Greece’s finance minister Euclid Tsakalotos has announced his country has broadly agreed the substance of a bailout deal with its creditors.

“Two or three small issues,” are pending with lenders, Reuters quoted Euclid Tsakalotos as saying.

A bailout agreement is needed to keep Greece in the eurozone and avert bankruptcy.

The Greek government is hoping to push the new €86 billion three-year agreement through parliament later this week.Greece bailout deal agreed Euclid Tsakalatos

Greece needs a deal by August 20, when the country has a debt repayment of about €3 billion to make to the European Central Bank (ECB).

The country will not be able to make that payment without funds emerging from its third bailout in just over five years.

Emerging from all-night talks at a central Athens hotel with negotiators representing Greece’s creditors, Euclid Tsakalotos said: “I think we are very close.”

“Two or three very small details remain,” he added.

Earlier, Reuters quoted a Greek official as saying an agreement had been reached.

Greece has agreed the function of a new independent privatization fund, and how non-performing bank loans will be administered, according to the official.

Both issues had been key sticking points in negotiations.