Troika Visits

E.U. Relents to Key Greek Demand

Greek leaders kick off European tour in diplomatic push for suppo
The European Commission said it planned to halt visits of supervisors to Athens, in an opening gambit in what may be a months-long negotiation over refinancing Greece's debt and keeping the country in the euro zone.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Greece needs a new deal with lenders to stave off bankruptcy. By agreeing to dissolve the troika, Mr. Juncker may be able to ease the way for a compromise with the government in Athens.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • The new Greek government has refused to cooperate with the troika of lenders – the ECB, EU and IMF.
    • Greece’s bailout runs out at the end of this month.
    • Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, are on a whirlwind tour of European capitals, with the exception of Berlin.
  • Audio

    Audio

  • Pdf

The “troika” of European lenders has become a dirty word — synonymous with onerous austerity and the public shame heaped upon euro zone sinners – and is nowhere more fervently hated than in Greece.

Now, the European Commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, is offering the Greeks a fig leaf by planning to scrap the periodic, public visits of intermediaries to Athens sent by the European Central Bank, the European Union and International Monetary Fund.

According to sources close to the commission interviewed by Handelsblatt, troika representatives will no longer travel to Athens to check on the Greek compliance with the austerity conditions imposed in return for €240 billion in emergency loans.

“We have to find an alternative quickly,” the sources in Brussels told Handelsblatt.

It is a hopeful sign that Mr. Juncker is willing to meet the new left-led Greek government, which has threatened to stop paying Greece’s debts, half way.

While the commission president is reportedly sympathetic to the new Greek government’s plans to increase the minimum wage, he strictly opposes any write-down of Greek debt.

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