Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Greek parliament endorses multi billion bailout scheme

Greek parliament (file photo)

Source: Press TV

The Greek parliament has officially approved a second multi-billion dollar bailout scheme worth up to 130 billion euros (USD 170 billion) in a bid to spare the country a debt default over its financial crisis.

The bailout package, endorsed early Wednesday, is provided jointly by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the eurozone.

The proposed text gained the approval of 213 socialist and conservative parliament members, while only 79 members from the communist left and far-right opposed it.

According to a finance ministry official, the endorsement came after Greece received a first payout of 7.5 billion euros on Tuesday under its second international bailout.

The payment of EU and IMF loans, on which the Greek economy depends to stay on its feet, will be continued, provided that Athens meets agreed targets to cut the country’s spending and restructure its economy.

This is the second such bailout in two years. The EU and IMF had agreed on a first bailout package worth 110 billion euros in 2010.

Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos’s interim government came into existence late last year after Socialist Prime Minister George Papandreou resigned in the midst of the country’s financial crisis.

The government’s main task is to ensure that the country avoids a default before organizing election polls by mid-May for the country’s elections, the date of which is anticipated to be announced next week.

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