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Greece’s exit from eurozone to be failure for all — Luxembourg premier

June 22, 2015, 20:49 UTC+3 BRUSSELS
The heads of state and governments of the eurozone’s 19 member states are discussing the ways of preventing Greece’s default at an extraordinary summit
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© AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris

BRUSSELS, June 22. /TASS/. Greece’s exit from the eurozone will become a failure for all, Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel said upon his arrival at an extraordinary summit of euro area leaders on Monday.

"A compromise is needed from all the sides because Greece’s withdrawal would be a failure for all," the premier said.

The eurozone leaders have gathered to hear and understand what Greece wants. It is necessary to act quickly because much time has been lost, the Luxembourg premier said.

The heads of state and governments of the eurozone’s 19 member states are discussing the ways of preventing Greece’s default.

Since 2010, when Greece’s sovereign debt crisis broke out, Athens has received €240 billion in two tranches of bailout loans from the EU and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Despite a partial debt write-off in 2012, Greece’s sovereign debt currently exceeds €315 billion or 175% of its GDP. This figure is almost three times the debt-to-GDP ratio set for the eurozone countries, which should not exceed 60% of GDO according to the EU’s Stability and Growth Pact.

Greece is scheduled to repay a €1.6 billion loan to the IMF on June 30, which is just interest payment at a reduced rate. Athens has no money to repay the loan. Greece may rescue the situation by resorting to the €7.2 billion loan intended for Greece as part of the second international macro-finance assistance program.

However, creditors are firmly determined to unlock this sum only against Greece’s clearly expressed obligation to introduce further austerity measures in the country.

Progress at the eurozone talks on Greece’s structural reforms and the aid program for the debt-laden Hellenic Republic may be reached this week but not at an extraordinary summit of the euro area leaders on Monday, Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila said.

"Today we’ll only discuss and consider the situation again. I hope we’ll be able to move forward on Thursday or Friday [on this issue]," Television Channel Yle quoted the Finnish premier as saying.

Finish Finance Minister Alexander Stubb said earlier on Monday the Greek debt talks might last many days as Greece’s new proposals received last night had not yet been considered by the EU institutions.

The summit of the eurozone leaders and the heads of European institutions convened on Monday is expected to reach compromise on the program of structural reforms for Greece, which is required to ensure a sufficient budget surplus to guarantee its ability to repay outstanding loans.

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