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Greece and the economic crisis 2015

NEWS ARCHIVE - April 28 - April 30

April 30, 2015

Greece signals concessions in crunch talks with lenders - Reuters

"Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras's three-month-old government is under growing pressure at home and abroad to reach an agreement with European and IMF lenders to avert a national bankruptcy. A new poll showed over three-quarters of Greeks feel Athens must strike a deal at any cost to stay in the euro.

...Greece wants an interim deal by next week, hoping that will allow the ECB to ease liquidity restrictions before a 750 million euro payment to the IMF falls due on May 12. Athens has suggested it will struggle to pay the installment.

..."Time is going to get tight before the 11th," one official said, referring to a crucial May 11 meeting of euro zone finance ministers.

Tsipras was expected to brief ministers on the talks at a cabinet meeting later on Thursday. An omnibus bill with reforms promised to lenders is likely to be put to parliament only after cabinet approval and the conclusion of the Brussels talks."

Washington Muscles In On Russia's Oil Deal With Greece - Forbes

"Earlier this month, Russian energy giant Gazprom signed a deal with the Greek government to turn it into a transit station for natural gas into Europe. The deal is part of the Russian-Turkey pipeline project known as the Turkish Stream which would include Greece as a major transit hub for Gazprom in the E.U.

Gazprom has been trying to come up with alternative routes into the E.U., its most important market, following the constant upheavals in Ukraine.

...Still, in Russia, where everything the western world does is looked at through a spy lens, those two new LNG terminals on Russia’s border were “evidence” of a Washington-inspired energy war with Russia. Let Europe fund the dirty work of reconstructing Ukraine’s economy. What Washington really wants is European energy markets.

This became even more evident this week when Secretary of State John Kerry wooed cash strapped Greece with a “counter-offer” to its part in Turkish Stream. Although the market does not know what that offer is, chances are it comes with the stipulation of nixing the Gazprom deal."

Is Greece about to give in? - Reuters

Online video report

Tsipras Squandered Greece's Opportunity - Huffington Post

Article by Joschka Fischer, former German Foreign Minister

"One can only feel sorry for Greece. For more than five years, the "troika" (the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund) has made it the object of a failed experiment with austerity that has exacerbated the country's economic crisis. And now Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras's government seems hell-bent on plunging Greece into the abyss.

...Tsipras squandered Greece's opportunity, because he and other Syriza leaders were unable to see beyond the horizon of their party's origins in radical opposition activism. They did not understand -- and did not want to understand -- the difference between campaigning and governing.

...Tsipras seems to have forgotten the Marxist tradition's emphasis on the dialectical unity of theory and practice. If you want to negotiate a change of tack with your creditors, you are unlikely to succeed if you destroy your own credibility and rant and rave about those whose money you need to avoid default. That, at least, is the lesson most of us have learned from theory and practice (also known as life).

...A disorderly Greek exit from the euro -- currently the greatest danger -- can be averted only if both sides operate on the assumption that the upcoming negotiations are not about who wins and who loses..."

April 28, 2015

Why Greece Will Become More Compromising - Bloomberg

[Video Link] Roubini Global Economics co-founder Nouriel Roubini comments on the Greek debt crisis during an interview with Bloomberg's Stephanie Ruhle and Erik Schatzker at the Milken Global Conference in Beverly Hills, CA.

Hopes for Greek deal rise as prime minister, EU see progress - SF Gate

"Hopes for a deal on Greece's bailout rose on Tuesday after the prime minister said he expected an agreement could be reached within two weeks and the European Union reported a pick-up in the negotiations.

...Euclid Tsakalotos, minister of international financial relations and a close ally to Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, will now handle the coordination within Varoufakis' negotiating team."

Did Alexis Tsipras just banish the risk of "Grexit"? - Fortune

"Tsipras’ reaction was to clip the wings of his all-too eloquent Finance Minister, putting deputy Foreign Minister Euclid Tsakalotos in charge of talks with the Eurozone, and also replacing an ally of Varoufakis in the working group that runs the technical talks in Brussels. Most importantly, Athens also appears to have stopped blocking access to data for the EU and IMF officials who are monitoring developments.

That adds up to an admission that Varoufakis has failed in his two main objectives: his formal one of drafting a package of alternative reforms that would unlock Greece’s remaining bailout funds; and his informal one of scaring the rest of the Eurozone into an unconditional rescue...

...The biggest risk to Greece’s membership of the Eurozone has always been that the far left wing of Syriza would torpedo a deal with the creditors and unintentionally trigger a financial collapse, with uncontrollable consequences. A senior Greek banker told me recently that although accidents can happen, Greeks would NEVER consciously vote to give up the euro. If the ultimate fate of Greece’s Eurozone membership is in the hands of voters rather than a party of romantic Marxists for whom martyrdom is almost as attractive as staying in power, everything looks a lot rosier."

NEWS ARCHIVE - April 2015

2015 - April 1 to April 16

2015 - April 15 - April 20

2015 - April 21 - April 23

2015 - April 24 - April 27

2015 - April 28 - April 30

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