Arab Today, arab today euimf audit to resume in greece
Last Updated : GMT 10:43:16
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EU-IMF audit to resume in Greece

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Arab Today, arab today EU-IMF audit to resume in Greece

Athens - AFP

Auditors from the EU and IMF will resume an inspection of Greek reforms this week that was suspended just days before the banking crisis erupted in Cyprus. The mission from the so-called troika of creditors -- the EU, IMF and the European Central Bank -- interrupted their audit in March to allow the government to work on \"a few outstanding issues\" believed to include civil service job cuts and a revised property tax. Attention then turned to the economic meltdown in Cyprus, where the government on Tuesday concluded talks with the troika on a 10-billion-euro ($12.8-billion) bailout after a narrow brush with bankruptcy. Greece\'s own bailout, initiated in 2010, is over 20 times higher. An audit report from the troika, which resumes meetings with Greek officials on Thursday, is required to release a 2.8-billion-euro loan slice delayed since last month. Another 6.0 billion euros was also originally scheduled for the first quarter of this year but will now have to wait at least until mid-April. Greece in April must repay 3.6 billion euros in maturing treasury bills, followed by another 3.2 billion in May.But a finance ministry source insisted on Wednesday: \"We do not have a problem (with payments).\" Conservative Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is under pressure from his coalition partners, the socialists and moderate leftists, to alleviate the tax burden on a nation groaning under a fourth year of austerity and a sixth year of recession. Under the bailout conditions adopted last year, Greece needs to cut public sector workers by 25,000 in 2013 and a total of 150,000 by the end of 2015. Greece must also speed up privatisation plans and recapitalise its top banks. \"We are very advanced in our preparation,\" government spokesman Simos Kedikoglou said on the troika talks. \"The signs are positive,\" he told state television NET. The heavily indebted country has been relying on international rescue packages to avoid bankruptcy. A return to growth initially foreseen for 2012 is now not expected before 2014. Since 2010 the European Union and the International Monetary Fund have committed 240 billion euros ($312 billion) overall in rescue loans to Greece.

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