After a marathon of negotiations between Brussels, Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin, Eurogroup head Jeroen Dijsselbloem decided to set the meeting of eurozone finance ministers on Greece on Monday, May 9th 2016, at 3pm in Brussels. The date has been set after taking into consideration that “discussion about the debt needed preparation and negotiations,” Athens News Agency notes and adds that “if there is no decision at the Eurogroup, there is still the option of an EU Summit most possible on May 14th or 15th.”
After the cancellation of the Eurogroup that was supposed to take place on Thursday,Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras contacted EU Council President Donald Tusk and asked for an extraordinary EU Summit. Berlin – exactly FinMin Wolfgang Schaeuble was against this idea. However, France stated that it would support Tsipras’ proposal if there is no decision at the Eurogroup.
France’s approach rang alarm, Dijsselbloem flew to Paris to meet with Finance Minister Michel Sapin. Purpose of the meeting was not only the date of the next Eurogroup meeting but also the content of the forthcoming agreement, as a number of EZ members (France, Italy, Portugal) as well as the European Commission consider that there is no question of additional measures package (IMF’s contingency measures of €3.6 billion) and that the agreement on the Greek debt should immediately be put on the table.
Earlier on Thursday, EU Monetary Affairs Commissioner, Pierre Moscovici told reporters in Brussels ““In our view we do not need a precise and detailed package but a mechanism that shows exactly how to take such measures if necessary.” Greece has proposed a “balancing mechanism” instead of having to legislate now for a precise measures package that may be needed in 2018. But the IMF turned down this proposal.
According to ANA, before the Eurogroup Dijsselbloem may invite Tsakalotos, Schaeuble and Sapin for a meeting as well as a meeting among Draghi, Juncker and Lagarde.
Apparently Dijsselbloem wants to avoid a new flop. Now that The Netherlands is holding the EU rotating Presidency, it may want to demonstrate, it has finally grown up and flew away from Schaeuble’s nest.
PS Phew! Finally, we can enjoy Easter 🙂