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Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-05-09

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Immediate 5.5bln euro IMF loan
  • [02] FinMin: Measures, not bankruptcy

  • [01] Immediate 5.5bln euro IMF loan

    WASHINGTON (ANA-MPA) -- The International Monetary Fund's (IMF) executive board on Sunday approved a three-year 30-billion euro "stand-by arrangement" for Greece in support of Athens' recently approved spending decreases and tax hikes, urgent measures aimed at avoiding sovereign debt default.

    According to an IMF press release here, the "front-loaded" programme immediately frees up roughly 5.5 billion euros to Greece as part of joint support mechanism with the eurozone, for a combined 20 billion euros in immediate financial support. In 2010, total IMF financing will amount to about 10 billion and will be partnered with about 30 billion euros earmarked by the EU.

    "The Greek government should be commended for committing to an historic course of action that will give this proud nation a chance of rising above its current troubles and securing a better future for the Greek people," IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn stressed

    [02] FinMin: Measures, not bankruptcy

    (ANA-MPA) -- Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou referred to "radical changes" in so-called "closed professions", the operation of the state, the tax system as well as in the labour and retail markets, in statements published in an Athens daily on Sunday. (ANA-MPA)

    He also distinguished between "vested rights", one that "have been rightfully obtained", and others concerning trade union claims, "to which the state succumbed at some time and which we must consider again."

    Papaconstantinou stressed that the country found itself in a major dilemma, but a simple one at the same time: It would either take painful measures in the sense that it also affects citizens who are not to blame for the situation, or it "would go to the wall". (ANA-MPA)

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