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Grexit, debt relief, stir tensions

Friday, July 17, 2015 - 01:59

Grexit and debt relief are some of the contentious issues still surrounding Greece's proposed 86 billion euro bailout package, which some doubt will be successful. Kirsty Basset reports.

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As firefighters fought a huge forest fire near Athens, euro zone leaders had their own battles to fight. With the Greek capital covered in smoke, its economic future by no means clear. Although a number of European parliaments have now voted in favour of re-opening bailout talks, Greece's third bailout package is still far from a done deal. NABs Nick Parsons. (SOUNDBITE) (English) NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK, HEAD OF MARKETS STRATEGY, NICK PARSONS, SAYING: "I think you'll find very few economists, or commentators, who believe in the durability of this package, who believe it can be implemented and who believe that, even if it were, that it could be successful." It's not being helped by talk of a Greek exit refusing to go away, the idea being fanned by German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, who supports a temporary Grexit from the euro zone. Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem. (SOUNDBITE) (English) EUROGROUP PRESIDENT AND DUTCH FINANCE MINISTER, JEROEN DIJSSELBLOEM, SAYING: "I would certainly be very happy if the talk about Grexit could stop and we could talk about getting Greece back on track and that's what we aim to do with this programme." Grexit seems to be less of a risk for now - but it's not the only idea causing angst. The IMF is calling for debt relief - chief Christine Lagarde saying the Fund could participate in a "complete" program for Greece - including debt restructuring to ease its burden. But Geman Chancellor Angela Merkel and Schaeuble say that writing off part of Greece's debt would be illegal under European law. Parsons says it's not going to be enough to sink the package though. (SOUNDBITE) (English) NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK, HEAD OF MARKETS STRATEGY, NICK PARSONS, SAYING: "The IMF will talk about pulling out. I don't ultimately believe it will. It will be exceptionally difficult for the IMF to insist on debt restructuring that goes against the wishes of Germany and then not to participate itself." But despite the uncertainty still surrounding Greece, European equities overall were set for their best week since January.

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Grexit, debt relief, stir tensions

Friday, July 17, 2015 - 01:59