Greece to hurry reform proposals for EU loans: minister| MENAFN.COM

Monday, 15 August 2022 04:34 GMT

Greece to hurry reform proposals for EU loans: minister

(MENAFN- AFP) Greece will speed up its reform proposals to its international creditors to unlock vital loans, its finance minister said Tuesday.

"(On March 9) I will submit a folder of six proposals and discuss with our peers which ones can be implemented immediately," Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis told Star TV in an interview.

Greece's new radical government has until April to present reform proposals to its EU-IMF creditors in order to win approval for its plans for a four-year economic recovery blueprint.

Until an agreement is reached, Athens has no access to funds remaining in its 240-billion euro ($272-billion) EU-IMF bailout.

And Greece this month needs to find around 6.0 billion euros ($6.8 billion) for debt repayments.

Eurozone chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem told the Financial Times on Monday that Athens could tap EU loans before the April deadline by showing reform progress.

"This is not a bad proposal at all," Varoufakis said on Tuesday.

The minister insisted that Greece would meet its March payment needs.

"March is solved. We are in the process of securing funds to cover the entire four-month period," he said.

In the upcoming talks, Varoufakis said Greece's goal was to restructure the country's huge debt and set sustainable growth goals.

"Debt repayment should be linked to (Greece's) growth rate. This is a red line for us," he said.

Upon coming to power in January, the new government alienated investors by freezing a number of key privatisation projects.

But Varoufakis insisted Tuesday that the government was not "dogmatic" and would examine privatisations on a case-by-case basis.

The minister said Athens would welcome private investment in state railways, but ruled out the privatisation of state electricity provider PPC.

"Privatising the energy market in the United States and Britain was a failure," he said.

He also said the government would "re-examine" the sale of 14 regional airports to German operator Fraport last year in order to maximise local jobs creation.

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