EU/IMF bailout monitors to return to Greece this week

Monday 07 March 2016 18.47
Euro zone ministers met to discuss how strictly Greece should be held to the reform commitments made as part of its €86bn bailout
Euro zone ministers met to discuss how strictly Greece should be held to the reform commitments made as part of its €86bn bailout

Bailout monitors from the EU and IMF will return to Greece as soon tomorrow in an effort to complete a long-delayed review of the programme and unlock rescue cash, European Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici has said.

Euro zone ministers will finally address debt relief for Greece, added Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem, meeting a key demand of Athens that has been resisted by the EU following its third bailout last year.

"I am very happy that mission chiefs are going to Athens as soon as tomorrow," Mr Moscovici said at a news briefing Monday after a meeting of the euro zone's 19 finance ministers in Brussels.

The ministers were trying to defuse a bitter dispute between top EU and IMF officials over how strictly to hold Greece to the ambitious reform commitments made as part of its €86bn bailout agreed last July.

The IMF encourages debt relief.

"We have a long-standing promise that if the Greek government fulfils its commitments... we will do what is necessary to make debt service manageable," Mr Dijsselbloem told the same news conference.

"Today... we made explicit that the discussion is on our table," the Dutch finance minister said.