Greece and its international creditors hope to finalize the terms of a third bailout agreement “by Monday night or early Tuesday,” Reuters reported Monday, citing an unnamed Greek official. The report comes amid ongoing talks in Athens between Greek finance and economy ministers, and negotiators from the European Central Bank (ECB), the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Stability Mechanism.
“When the new bailout comes to parliament for a vote it will be one bill with two articles -- one article will be the loan agreement and the MoU (memorandum of understanding) and the second article will be the prior actions,” the unnamed Greek official told Reuters.
Greece, which narrowly avoided an exit from the eurozone and staved off bankruptcy last month, is aiming to secure a crucial new bailout of up to 86 billion euros ($94 billion) in exchange for further reforms ahead of the Aug. 20 deadline to repay 3.4 billion euros ($3.7 billion) to the ECB.
Greek officials have previously said that they expect the new accord to go to the country’s parliament for approval by Aug. 18 -- allowing the bailout to kick in before the debt repayment deadline, ensuring that Athens does not have to seek a bridge loan to prevent another default.
While details of the third bailout have not yet been revealed, the main elements of the proposed deal include spending cuts, administrative and pension reforms, tax increases and privatizations. Additionally, the negotiations are also focusing on “ambitious but feasible” proposals for raising Greece’s budget surplus to 3.5 percent of GDP by 2018, according to media reports.
“From 12 midnight the two sides started the final stretch … combing through the final text, sentence by sentence, word by word,” a second unnamed Greek official told Reuters.