Greece has rejected a draft proposal submitted by Eurogroup head Jeroen Dijsselbloem at the meeting in Brussels on Monday, stressing that the draft was “away from what it had been agreed so far.” Under these circumstances, Athens sees no way that “there could be an agreement tonight.” Greek media report that there were several points on the draft Athens did not agree with, the Eurogroup meeting was temporary interrupted. Jeroen Dijjselbloem made some statement during the break and said that “an extraordinary group may take place on Friday” (Feb 21) but that the EZ FinMins will decide upon later today.
The draft (see below) presented as a basis for discussion is a “text not consistent with what has been discussed and agreed upon so far,” the Prime Minister’s office said in a non paper and described as “irrational and unacceptable the insistence” of certain circles with regards to the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding (bailout agreement).
In a non paper by the Prime Minister’s office, Greece says that
“The Eurogroup presented a draft text as a basis for discussion, a text that is a radical withdrawal from the joint statement by Dijsselbloem and PM Tsipras, last Thursday.
“The insistence of some circles to implement the new Greek government Memorandum is absurd and unacceptable. The implementation of the Memorandum program was off the table at the summit. Those who restore it, they are wasting their time.
“Under these circumstances there can be no agreement today.” (in.gr)
In its Prime Time News, private Mega TV reported that what angered Greece in the draft wording was the reforms, the close cooperation and the program extension.
Based on Dijsselbloem draft (see below) the points Greece rejected could be:
a) the program “extension”
b) the specific reforms mentioned: “tax policy, privatization, labor market reforms, financial sector and pensions.”
c) “to work in close agreement with Eu and international partners” [IMF]
After Athens rejection the Eurogroup meeting has been temporary interrupted.
Finance Minister Varoufakis is expected to make a statement
Athens News Agency correspondent in Brussels Vaggelis Demiris uploaded the text on Twitter:
Το σχέδιο ανακοίνωσης του Γιουρογκρουπ που απέρριψε η Αθηνα pic.twitter.com/XTkvAM9aDt
— vangelis demiris (@vangelisdemiris) February 16, 2015
Here is a readable copy:
There is no way Greece could agree to this draft which is much more tougher than the generalized draft of the previous Eurogroup meeting last Wednesday.
How can they expect Greece to agree on the same full list of ‘reforms’ that it actually rejects?
@pierremoscovici why did four days of technical discussion produce an offer to Greece harder than was made Wednesday?
— Paul Mason (@paulmasonnews) February 16, 2015
Questions waiting for official answers lol
[enhancing social fairness]
One could not be more disingenuous than to place in brackets the single most important fact underlining the intent of the new Greek government and it’s “strong commitment” -the commitment to it’s people.
My God, how difficult it must have been for the Eurogroup to even utter those blasphemous words..! But there it is, thee ideal, the ideal that fractures the two parties, and fractures the Euro. Those brackets speak volumes…
I’m on Greece’s side. However, as opposed to Mr. Varoufakis’ statements, I don’t think the Eurogroup will budge because the right wing governments of Spain and Portugal will have elections this year and right now the polls are not too favourable for them, in particular for the Portuguese government. Accepting the Greek government’s proposal would make the life of those governments even more difficult domestically and Merkel and Schauble could lose support in the Eurogroup. What will the Greek government do if they don’t budge at all ?