Multi-speed Europe

Creditors’ mission chiefs arrive with a long list of prior actions

The start of the fourth post-bailout assessment of Greece by its creditors, which starts on Monday, represents a new era in relation between the two sides, as they have to construct a new framework of cooperation after the change in government, based on trust and the adoption of common targets.

Staikouras to formally ask ESM to OK early IMF loan repayment

Finance Minister Christos Staikouras will present the priorities of the new Greek government at Friday's Eurogroup meeting before sending a letter to the European Stability Mechanism informing Greece's main creditor of Athens' intention to repay some of the loans from the International Monetary Fund ahead of schedule.

Staikouras to discuss IMF loan repayment, gov't plan at Eurogroup

Greece's Finance Minister Christos Staikouras will discuss a request for an early repayment of part of the country's outstanding loans to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during Friday's Eurogroup meeting in Helsinki.
Athens is keen to repay the IMF loan which is more expensive than the yields Greece currently pays in the markets on its bonds.

Eurozone neutral to positive toward Greek plan for early IMF repayment

Senior eurozone officials were neutral to positive this week to a plan presented by their Greek peer for Athens to repay earlier some of its costly loans from the International Monetary Fund, a senior EU official said on Friday.
Greece, cut off from the markets during the sovereign debt crisis of 2010-2015, borrowed heavily from the IMF and eurozone governments.

Borrowing rates remain at high levels

The cost of money is refusing to drop at any significant pace in Greece as borrowing remains stubbornly high for local enterprises and households in the face of low interest rates in the eurozone.

Small and medium-sized enterprises and the few households that are able to secure bank credit are burdened with rates that are twice the eurozone average.

Bulgaria with a New Position about Schengen

Prime Minister Boyko Borissov was the guest of honour at the forum of the ruling Christian Social Union in Germany. From there came support for Bulgaria in the investment race of Volkswagen. The meeting with the Christian Social Union had great symbolic power. It should reach potential investors like the automotive concern, said Bundestag leader Alexander Dobrindt.

Cautious attempt to move the 2020 primary surplus goalposts

The government is hoping to secure up to 1.2-1.3 billion euros, or 0.6-0.7 percent of gross domestic product, in additional fiscal space for 2020 that would allow it some leeway to enforce tax easing plans, despite promises last week by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis to German Chancellor Angela Merkel that Greece will meet the target of 3.5 percent of GDP for the 2020 primary surplus.