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Greece to continue talks with EU/IMF lenders on Sunday
July 6, 2013 / 8:58 PM / 4 years ago

Greece to continue talks with EU/IMF lenders on Sunday

ATHENS, July 6 (Reuters) - Greece made further progress in talks with its international lenders but negotiations will continue on Sunday to reach a deal before Monday’s Eurogroup decides on unlocking further aid, a finance ministry official said on Saturday.

Athens has been in talks with inspectors from the European Union, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund troika since Monday to settle issues in its bailout performance review after failing to deliver on public sector reforms.

The government missed a June deadline to put 12,500 state workers into a “mobility scheme”, under which they are transferred or laid off within a year, but agreement was reached after lengthy talks on Saturday, officials said.

“Our proposals were accepted by the troika, the issue (of public sector reforms) needs to be approved by Monday’s Eurogroup,” Administrative Reform Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis told reporters, without providing details.

Greece hopes that euro zone finance ministers will free up its next 8.1 billion-euro ($10.4 billion) tranche of aid when they meet on Monday as it needs part of the money to redeem about 2.2 billion euros of bonds in August.

The latest loan instalment is one of the last big cash injections that twice-bailed-out Athens stands to receive as part of a 240 billion-euro rescue package that expires at the end of 2014.

The tranche may be paid in instalments instead of in one shot, EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn said on Friday.

Other issues discussed with the troika included ways to cover a fiscal gap, including a shortfall of more than 1 billion euros that has emerged at state-run health insurer EOPYY, and a possible reduction in a sales tax for restaurants.

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