You are here
Greece debt talks to resume after Tsipras, Merkel call
[ATHENS] Athens will resume talks with its creditors on Monday, a Greek government source said, after Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras spoke on the phone with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Speaking on Sunday, the two leaders "expressed their willingness to establish stable communication throughout the negotiations, in order to quickly reach an agreement that is good for both sides," the source said.
Greece has been trying to negotiate a deal that would unlock 7.2 billion euros (S$10.42 billion) in remaining EU-International Monetary Fund bailout money that the debt-ridden Mediterranean country needs to avoid default and a possible exit from the euro.
In a bid to speed up the stalled negotiations, Tsipras met with Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem.
The so-called Brussels group, which is in charge of the negotiations on Greek's debt, will hold a teleconference with Greek officials Monday, and a second meeting in person on Wednesday in the Belgian capital.
The developments come after EU ministers heaped pressure on Greece Friday to speed up negotiations, after a meting in Riga last week ended without a breakthrough.
European Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici on Sunday told French radio station RTL: "We will do everything we need to do in order to reach an agreement." He added: "Greece's place is in the eurozone."
Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis, who maintained his critical tone in comments published on Sunday, told Greek paper Realnews: "Our job is to convince our partners that we are working for profound reforms and a reasonable public finance policy." "Their job is to give up their sterile attachment to the 'logic' of memorandums (austerity) that has failed," he added.
A survey published Sunday showed that seven out of 10 Greeks want their radical left-wing leaders to reach an agreement with their creditors.
Tsipras swept to power in January on a promise to break with the austerity demanded by Greece's EU-IMF creditors. Defying his paymasters, he pushed welfare laws through parliament last month and has continued to refuse measures agreed by the previous government.