Questions grow around Greece’s ability to pay IMF

IMF2222Greece yesterday submitted its latest reform list to its European partners. The Financial Times published a copy of the 26 page document, which aims at raising up to €6bn in revenue.

The cash comes from areas such as: an audit of offshore bank transfers (€875m) and a new lottery scheme aimed at compelling people to demand VAT receipts (€600m). However, the list also includes new spending pledges, seeming reversal of previous reforms and includes little on pension and labour market reform – seen as crucial by the EU/IMF/ECB.

The list is seen as an improvement on the original circulated on Friday. However, EU officials have suggested that a deal is unlikely before the meeting of Eurozone finance ministers on 24 April since it still requires much more detail. French Finance Minister Michel Sapin said there had been “progress” but added more is needed “in the quantification of the measures”.

In an interview with Spiegel Online, Greek Interior Minister Nikos Voutsis said that, if Greece does not receive any funding before its next payment to the IMF is due on 9 April, then it will not be able to make the payment on time. Greek government spokesman Gabriel Sakellaridis said in a statement to Bloomberg that there is “no possibility” that Greece will miss its IMF payment. Open Europe’s blog on what happens if Greece does not pay the IMF on time was reproduced by Zerohedge and cited by the Guardian live blog.

Meanwhile, the ECB yesterday agreed to raise the limit on the Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA) provided to Greek banks by €700m, taking it to €71.8bn. Reports suggest there was a further €3bn outflow of deposits from Greek banks in March. Separately, New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras said his party would support measures needed to keep Greece in the euro.

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