Just days before the Eurogroup meeting on Greece’s program review and the country’s European lenders keep up the good traditional work of Dirty Games, Blackmail and Pressure. We’ve been there, we’ve seen that. We’ve heard “the anonymous EU source” one million times since 2010 when the first bailout was signed to save the debt-ridden country. Or was it two millions?
The International Monetary Fund still remains reluctant over its participation in the current and future program. Germany and Wolfgang Schaeuble threaten “No IMF, No Money”. Some ol’ chaps in Brussels spin the wheel.
And they told Greek reporters that in order to stay in the Greek program or even complete the second review the IMF wants Athens to legislate now some structural reforms like social security reform and reduction of tax-free threshold.
These senior Eu sources stressed that “the IMF’s participation is sine qua non* for completing the second review of Greece’s adjustment program.”
One week ahead of the Eurogroup meeting on January 26, the working hypothesis in Brussels is that the IMF and the European institutions will find a common ground, the sources said.
The institutions will then immediately return to Athens and the review will be completed with the IMF’s participation before the next Eurogroup on February 20, ahead of elections in the Netherlands, they added.
A representative of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) told the Athens-Macedonian News Agency that the ESM “is continuing to work hard so that the IMF remains committed to the Greek programme and continues to work with European institutions.”
Eurozone sources also confirmed to the ANA that the IMF’s non-participation in the Greek programme would require a new programme. This would be difficult and time-consuming, they added, since it would require ratification by Eurozone national parliaments and this might take up until the end of 2017. The view that the IMF could participate without contributing funding through a modification of the existing programme was not realistic for the time being, the same sources said.
“But if there is no progress next month, with the Greek government agreeing to legislate some of the measures its creditors (and not just the IMF) will demand, then the review runs the risk of remaining pending for the coming months, up until May or even June, according to the estimates of two eurozone officials,” ANA notes.
*sine qua non = indispensable and essential action, condition
I suppose these EU sources are the same -most likely German or even Dutch – sources who recently challenged in fact put pressure on Schaeuble to take clear position on whether he would support or not a program without the IMF.
PS Are there dark forces in EU sources stronger than Schaeuble?
Social Security? EU-wide all the same welfare or torpedo against granting 200 Euro and a 200 Euro maximum Pension?
And the “reforms” recipe is simple: more cuts, more taxes, or in other words more devastation, more looting until everything has been confiscated by the local Quislings and offered to the 4th Reich. There is nothing dark about this scenario, it is out there in the open with neon lights, …pity the Greeks are blind.