12th February 2015
Greek politicians and eurozone bosses have failed to arrive at an agreement over the embattled country’s debt obligations though both parties are still hopeful a deal can be made.
Following seven hours of talks in Brussels, Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem who heads-up the Eurogroup eurozone finance ministers urged that the discussions had however been “constructive” according to BBC News.
Greece’s new government led by the left-wing Syriza party, believes that the conditions imposed on the country in its €240bn bailout are bring it to its knees.
Since the recent election Greece’s finance minister Yanis Varoufakis has been on a charm offensive travelling around European capital’s trying to renegotiate the deal. Despite the efforts the European Union is pushing for Greece to stick with the originally agreed deal.
Policymakers from both sides are hoping to reach an agreement that would stop Greece from having to leave the single currency bloc.
But the latest session of talks ended without a joint statement and therefore no agenda on what should happen next. Further talks are due to take place on Monday.
The Greek government has proposed to overhaul 30% of its bailout obligations, and instead replace them with a 10-point plan of reforms.
But EU creditors, led by Germany, are insisting that the original rules of the bailout cannot be changed.
The BBC reported that Dijsselbloem, after the meeting on Wednesday said that there had been no discussion of detailed proposals.
He said: “We didn’t enter into negotiations on content of the programme or a programme, we simply tried to work next steps over the next couple days.
“We were unable to do that. We had an intense discussion, constructive, covering a lot of ground, also making progress, but not enough progress yet to come to joint conclusions.”
Greece’s finance minister Varoufakis however added that struck an upbeat note, saying the talks had produced “very good discussions”.
Time is however running out for the country as its current EU-IMF bailout expires on 28 February.
According to Reuters news agency, Greece rejected a draft agreement from the eurozone finance ministers that proposed “extending” the current bailout deal.
Earlier this week, Alan Greenspan, the former head of the US central bank stated that he believes Greece will ultimately have to leave the eurozone.