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ATHENS, July 28. /TASS/. The expert round of negotiations with international creditors on third bailout package for Greece worth €86 billion kicks off in Athens on Tuesday.
A source in Greece’s finance ministry told TASS that "first contacts with representatives of the mission [of international creditors] will be introductory." The talks with the European Union, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund on the European Stability Mechanism will focus on financial issues, pensions, labor relations and market liberalization.
Greece wants to launch talks on the new bailout agreement as soon as possible, fearing that creditors may introduce new demands on austerity measures. The situation in the Greek economy has been deteriorating since capital controls were established a month ago; interbank lending market was frozen and Athens Stock Exchange suspended.
The Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research released a report stating that the Greek economy will fall by 2.9% of GDP this year instead of growing by 2-2.5%. The Hellenic Statistic Authority ELSTAT registered that economic growth in the country slowed down by 0.2% in the first quarter of 2015. The Greek authorities understand that they cannot demonstrate budget surplus in the conditions of falling economy, and creditors may demand new measures from Athens to cover the lack of state revenue.
Greece plans to complete negotiations by August 12 so that it can receive the first tranche in the framework of the new bailout package already on August 20. Athens will spend the first tranche on repaying its almost €3.2 billion debt to the European Central Bank and €1.5 billion debt to the International Monetary Fund in September.