Greece risks running out of cash by April 20, scrambles on reforms

Tue Mar 24, 2015 3:24pm EDT
 
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By George Georgiopoulos and Thorsten Severin

ATHENS/BERLIN (Reuters) - Greece risks running out of cash by April 20 unless it secures fresh aid, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Tuesday, leaving it little time to convince skeptical creditors it is committed to economic reform.

After talks with EU leaders including German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the past week, Athens said it will present a package of reforms to its euro zone partners by Monday in the hope of unlocking aid and avoiding a messy default.

"It will be done at the latest by Monday," government spokesman Gabriel Sakellaridis told Mega TV.

Merkel did not reveal details from her meetings with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, but she did tell members of her conservative party at a closed-door meeting in parliament on Tuesday that Greece needs to work with the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the European Commission to unlock the cash injection it needs.

"Time is short," she said, according to party allies.

Comments from the German foreign minister and the chairman of euro zone finance ministers suggested slightly more optimism among Greece's partners that it may be moving closer to meeting the conditions needed to receive more cash.

"That process is moving once again, I say with some cautious satisfaction. Now there's hard work happening on complementary additions to the (reform) list," said Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who is also Dutch finance minister.

"That they’re all but broke, we knew already," he told RTL Nieuws television. "But my message to the Greeks is then every time again: So then, work with us as quickly as possible on an adjustment to the program."   Continued...

 
A Greek national flag flutters as the parliament building is seen in the background in Athens March 24, 2015. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis