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Chinese and russian creditors

Germany
18.04.2015
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Athens eying Russia, China for loans as financial deadline nears
Greek officials are pulling out all the stops in an effort to borrow 15 billion euros (16.2 billion dollars) to avoid default, with recent feelers out to China and Russia, according to Greek media reports Saturday.
GALLERY
Athens (dpa) - Weekly newspaper Karfi cited government officials saying that the country is hoping China will provide it with a 10-billion-euro loan, in the form of a prepayment for future use of the port of Piraeus and as an advance on its investment into Greece‘s railway operator.
Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras (L) shake hands after their meeting in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, 08 April 2015.

The country is also hoping for an additional 3 to 5 billion euros from Russia, according to the weekly Agora, also quoting officials. That would serve as an advance payment for fees linked to a planned gas pipeline dubbed Turkish Stream.


The pipeline would bring Russian gas to the Greek-Turkish border. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier this month about extending the pipeline onto Greek territory so the gas could then be shipped on to Central Europe.

German news website Spiegel Online reported that a deal to that effect could be signed as early as Tuesday. A senior Greek official said inking the deal could "turn the page" for Greece, which has flirted with default for years, ever since it turned out that past governments had chronically under-reported the country‘s debts.

EU"s opinion on that deal

However, questions linger, such as whether the European Union would approve the deal to bring the pipeline into Greece and whether there is a way to release money for a project that has yet to receive such approval.

Greece is desperately trying to pull together a list of credible reforms and cost-cutting proposals to present to its creditors - the EU, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) - in exchange for the release of a 7.2-billion-euro tranche of funding from its bailout package that has been held up amid worries that Greece is not making the changes necessary to stay solvent.

The future of Greece‘s economy will likely be the focus of talks between various finance ministers meeting Saturday at the IMF‘s annual spring meeting in Washington.

 

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