Germany rules out Greek aid package
BERLIN - Agence France-Presse
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble. AFP photoGerman Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble yesterday ruled out a third aid package for Greece but stressed the debt-mired country would stay in the eurozone despite its difficulties.
Speaking on German radio, Schaeuble said: “The costs for Greece are already very high and therefore we cannot have a new programme for Greece.” In May 2010, Greece became the first eurozone country to receive a bailout, winning a 110-billion-euro ($138-billion) package in exchange for tough austerity measures.
Then in October 2011, the eurozone cobbled together a second package of 130 billion euros, with an additional debt write-off worth 100 billion euros.
Greece needs to satisfy an international team of creditors known as the “troika” that it is making enough progress in cuts and reforms to unlock a key tranche of this second bailout.
Troika report expected next month
“Now the troika has to give us its report” expected in October, said Schaeuble.
He emphasized that he expected Greece to remain in the eurozone and said speculation about a possible “Grexit” from the 17-country zone was “not helpful”.
Turning to the broader difficulties faced in the eurozone, he said that in one year “the euro would be a bit more stable and there will be less nervousness on the financial markets”.
“But it will not yet be in completely calm waters,” he cautioned.
“We have lost confidence. That goes very quickly. Winning it back is difficult and takes a long time,” said the minister, pointing to the difficulty of taking decisions at a European level.