Greece makes new proposals aimed at ending bailout impasse
Greece has made new proposals intending to end a long standoff with international bailout creditors and unlock vitally needed rescue funds, officials in Athens and Brussels said Tuesday.
An official in the radical left- led government said the suggestions were submitted Monday to the European Union’s economic and monetary affairs chief, Pierre Moscovici, in Brussels.
He said the documents included alternative ideas on budget measures required for creditors to approve the bailout payment, and proposals on “a workable plan” to render Greece’s crushing debt load viable. No further details were made public.
The submission follows last week’s impasse, when bailout creditors responded to a 47-page Greek proposal with a brief counter- offer that Athens rejected as containing “absurd” measures that would hurt the economy and worsen the lot of Greeks already reeling from five years of deep cuts and soaring unemployment.
The two sides mainly disagree on creditors’ demands for Athens to raise the sales tax on food, medicine and power bills, abandon plans to improve labor protection laws and further cut pensions. These would be extremely hard for the new government to implement — less than five months after its election on a combative anti- austerity platform.