- Title: EUROZONE-GREECE/TECHNICAL TEAM Talks with international creditors start in Athens
- Date: 28th July 2015
- Summary: ATHENS, GREECE (JULY 28, 2015) (REUTERS) VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE SIGN "GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE" VARIOUS MEMBERS OF TECHNICAL TEAM GETTING OUT OF CAR AND ENTERING THE OFFICE CAMERAS (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) GREECE'S DEPUTY FINANCE MINISTER, DIMITRIS MARDAS, SAYING: "As you know, we are the support office to the negotiating team. We are following the developments and we will give the information that they need on how to best go with the process. But for all the technical issues about the negotiations, you have to ask the ministers." EXTERIOR OF GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE SECURITY OUTSIDE VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE
- Embargoed: 12th August 2015 13:00
- Location: Greece
- Country: Greece
- Topics: General
- Reuters ID: LVA5CVFLX9ZSEX2TP7BYOV25RXEL
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Technical experts from Greece's international creditors arrived at the General Accounting Office in the capital Athens on Tuesday (July 28) for talks that will pave the way for the country's third bailout.
On Monday (July 27), international creditors said they want Greece to enact a third wave of politically sensitive reforms before they will release any money to keep the near bankrupt country afloat.
The government of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has pushed two packages of measures through parliament this month as a condition for starting talks on a three-year loan worth up to 86 billion euros ($95 billion) to keep Greece in the eurozone.
The technical talks were delayed for several days by logistical issues.
Greece's deputy finance minister Dimitris Mardas said his office was there to provide support to the team.
"As you know, we are the support office to the negotiating team. We are following the developments and we will give the information that they need on how to best go with the process. But for all the technical issues about the negotiations, you have to ask the ministers," Mardas told reporters.
The institutions involved in the talks are the European Commission, the ECB and the IMF, as well as the eurozone's rescue fund, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM).
Among politically sensitive measures held back from the initial package were curbs on early retirement and changes in the taxation of farmers to close loopholes that are highly costly for the Greek state.
A source close to the talks said these reforms were expected to be enacted by mid-August.
However, touching pensions is sensitive with Tsipras's left-wing Syriza party, which has already suffered a substantial revolt over the Brussels agreement, and the main opposition New Democracy party opposes ending tax breaks for farmers.
Both sides say they want a deal concluded before Aug. 20 but Germany, Greece's biggest and most demanding creditor, said there should be no rush.
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