Sunday

24th Jul 2016

Germany stalls Greek bailout money

Germany is stalling the payment of a €2.5 billion bailout tranche to Greece, pending further job cuts in the public sector.

The tranche was supposed to have been paid earlier this month, but Athens will likely have to wait another week untill all 22 "prior actions" are met and the Bundestag gives its blessing.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • Greece is waiting for a €2.5 billion tranche (Photo: Constantine Gerontis)

"There is a preliminary report by the troika, saying that most prior actions are met, but some are still outstanding," Hans Joachim Narzynski, a spokesman for the German finance ministry said Wednesday (24 July) in a press conference.

He said the final troika report is expected "very soon", with the Greek parliament set to adopt one last measure on Thursday related to further public sector cuts.

Some 4,200 public sector workers, including teachers and doctors, will be put in a "labour mobility scheme", which should be boosted to 12,500 by September and another 12,500 in December.

A teleconference between eurozone finance officials took place on Wednesday and another one will be called on Thursday, but a final green light is not expected before 29 July, after the relevant committee in the Bundestag gives its approval.

The €2.5 billion are only part of a larger tranche of €6.8 billion which Greece should receive by end October. Eurozone finance ministers earlier this month decided to break the tranche into several parts and link each of them to precise cuts and privatisations.

A few hundred doctors and nurses protested in Athens on Wednesday against the planned job cuts, as the capital's six major hospitals are to be merged and reduced in size.

Trade unions also staged a 24-hour strike against the troika-imposed measures, in a country where three years of austerity and recession have also seen violent clashes with police.

German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble visited Athens last week in a bid to soothe the anger of the Greek people against what they see as a German-imposed austerity diktat.

"This visit is an expression of our confidence in, and support for Greece. I have not come as a teacher to give lessons," he said back then.

But without Athens fulfilling all the promised cuts, Schaeuble is not willing to give his green light to the disbursement of further money.

EU to tweak rules on Chinese 'dumping'

The EU Commission has tried to fudge the issue of whether China is a “market economy” amid efforts to protect European industry from cheap exports.

Court ruling puts Renzi bank plan in doubt

EU court ruling on bank bailouts has raised the likelihood of a political embarrassment for Renzi, months before a referendum puts his future and, potentially, Italy’s euro future on the line.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Belgrade Security ForumMigration, Security and Solidarity within Global Disorder: Academic Event Agenda for 2016
  2. GoogleHow Google Fights Piracy: Creating Value While Fighting Piracy
  3. EJC"My Visit to Israel" - Opinion by MEP Lopez Aguilar, Chair of the EP Working Group on Antisemitism
  4. World VisionChildren Migrating, Out of School and at Work as Hunger Deepens in Southern Africa
  5. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceStand-Up (and Exercise) to Prevent Chronic Diseases
  6. Centre Maurits CoppietersLaunches a Real-time News Hub Specialised in EU Stakeholders
  7. Dialogue PlatformFethullah Gulen Calls for International Probe Into Turkey Coup Allegations
  8. GoogleEU-US Privacy Shield: Restoring Faith in Data Flows and Transatlantic Relations
  9. World VisionWorld Leaders & Youth Advocates Launch Partnership to End Violence Vs. Children
  10. Counter BalanceReport: Institutionalised Corruption in Romania's Third Largest Company
  11. Access NowEuropol Supports Encryption. We Can Relax Now… Right?
  12. GoogleLearn about Google's projects across Europe on Twitter @GoogleBrussels

Latest News

  1. Munich attack might not have been terrorism
  2. A very British (and Corbynite) coup
  3. Poland 'changing for the worse' for Muslims and refugees
  4. EU aims to lift visas on Turks despite purge
  5. ECB in ‘bail-out’ of scandal-tainted VW
  6. EU failed to learn lesson from Brexit, Poland says
  7. UK accord on EU workers 'crucial', France says
  8. EU and US take different lines on Turkey crackdown