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Bloomberg: Greece will not receive € 5.7bln tranche at EuroGroup today

Greece is not expected to receive the Eurogroup approval today for the € 5.7 billion disbursements, as there are still some outstanding issues in the prerequisites, according to Bloomberg which claims to have a report in its hands.

The two pending issues that are delaying the release of the € 5.7 billion concern the Hellenikon project (the verdict of the Council of State-CoS expected) and the progress in the auctions. Both Athens and the EU hope to have resolved the issues before the creditors return to the Greek capital on February 26.

Meanwhile, an EU official claimed these funds could be withheld until mid-March and due also to the delay in the German parliamentary committee programming, which has to approve the disbursement.

The key question, however, is whether Greece can fully stand on its feet when the bailout programme ends, especially if the current global economic recovery weakens. The delay in issuing the 7-year bond and the recent rise in Greek 10-year bonds are a reminder of the country’s vulnerability to external market conditions, a European official told Bloomberg.

On Sunday evening, European sources told protothema.gr that it would be “difficult today (yesterday for Clean Monday) to approve today the disbursement of the tranche of € 5.7 billion”.

Sources in the Finance Ministry quoted by the Athens News Agency (AMNA) confirm that there will be no disbursement of the instalment. According to AMNA, “the last two prerequisites (concerning the smooth conduct of electronic auctions and Hellenikon) are of a technical nature. Government and Institutions, the same sources told AMNA, were awaiting the formality of their completion in the near future. The disbursement of the tranche will immediately follow.”

The same sources said that during today’s Eurogroup, officials will focus on “the completion of the fourth review starting with the arrival of the Heads of Institutions in Athens on February 26, 2018. There will also be a briefing on the progress made in the talks on debt relief. At the same time, the progress made in the 110 prerequisites of the third evaluation, 108 of which have been closed, will also be verified”.