Half of Ger­mans against debt relief for Greece

Kathimerini English - - Focus -

BERLIN (Reuters) – Around half of Ger­mans are against grant­ing debt relief to Greece and around three in 10 want the debt-laden coun­try to quit the euro­zone, a sur­vey showed yes­ter­day. The INSA poll for the Bild news­pa­per showed 46.4 per- cent of peo­ple liv­ing in Germany, Europe’s pay­mas­ter, thought giv­ing Greece debt relief would be un­fair for other euro­zone coun­tries. That com­pared with around a fifth (18.4 per­cent) who did not share that view and 9.1 per­cent who said they did not care. Athens and its cred­i­tors agreed on Mon­day to re­sume talks on a longstalled re­view of Greece’s bailout, but only af­ter Greece ac­cepted ex­am­i­na­tion of its re­forms for 2019 on­ward. The head of the IMF, Chris­tine La­garde, said on Wed­nes­day that Greece does not need a hair­cut on its debt at the mo­ment but added that debt re­struc­tur­ing and in­ter­est rate cuts on bailout loans were nec­es­sary. The Ger­man gov­ern­ment, pre­par­ing for an elec­tion on Septem­ber 24, is against debt relief for Greece. said on Thurs­day, de­spite the risk of de­lays to this op­tion for re­duc­ing depen­dence on Rus­sia. Politi­cians and min­is­ters meet­ing in Baku backed the $40 bil­lion, 3,500-kilo­me­ter chain of pipe­lines, a step to­ward curb­ing Rus­sia’s one-third share of Europe’s nat­u­ral gas mar­ket. The Trans Adri­atic Pipe­line (TAP) is the project’s end piece, join­ing up with the Trans Ana­to­lian Pipe­line at the Turkish bor­der, then cross­ing Greece and Albania to reach Italy. But the slow pace of work in Italy’s Puglia re­gion and grow­ing con­cern over Azer­bai­jan’s abil­ity to honor its sup­ply com­mit­ments – it faces do­mes­tic short­falls – have knocked con­fi­dence in the project.

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