BRUSSELS Dec 14 Euro zone lenders have put on
hold the implementation of a short-term debt relief deal for
Greece on Wednesday after the Greek government proposed to make
a one-off payout to pensioners in December, the euro zone
bailout fund ESM said.
Euro zone finance ministers agreed on Dec 5 to grant Greece
short-term debt relief that would reduce the amount of the
country's public debt by 20 percentage points of GDP by 2060.
But on Dec 8, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said,
without consulting euro zone lenders, that his government would
spend 617 million euros in one-off benefits for low-income
pensioners ahead of Christmas because Greece exceeded its 2016
primary surplus target.
"Following recent proposals by the Greek government to spend
additional fiscal resources for pensions and VAT our governing
bodies have put their decisions temporarily on hold," a
spokesman for the ESM said.
"Institutions are currently assessing the impact of Greek
government decisions vis a vis the ESM programme commitments and
targets. (We) will then analyze the institutions' assessment and
subsequently decide how to proceed," he said.
(Reporting By Jan Strupczewski)