The Board of Directors of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) has authorised the release of €1 billion to Greece at almost the exact same time as a vote on a bill containing prior actions of the fourth and last review of the third bailout programme by the Hellenic Parliament,
The €1 billion is the remaining amount of the fourth tranche of the ESM financial assistance to be used for further clearing arrears of the Greek government. The release of funds was initially delayed for a week as the ESM waited for the Greek government to provide further information on the clearance of net arrears.
“I am pleased to note that the Greek government has made sufficient progress in clearing its arrears to the private sector,” said ESM Managing Director Klaus Regling. “If Greece stays determined in maintaining the reform momentum and in implementing the remaining reforms, I am optimistic that we can complete the ongoing fourth review of the ESM programme and Greece can make a successful exit in August, as planned.”
Another step towards a successful conclusion
The European Commissioner for Financial Affairs, Pierre Moscovici, tweeted from Paris on the bill’s approval by the Hellenic Parliament, saying,”Good news, as the bill enacting several prior actions, is adopted by the Hellenic Parliament! Our teams will carefully assess these and the completion of the other commitments ahead of the Eurogroup on 21/6. Another step towards a successful conclusion of the Greek programme.”
Eurogroup President Mário Centeno echoed Moscovici’s upbeat tone, saying “Greece continues to deliver on its commitments. Another milestone completed in arrears clearance allows the ESM to disburse the pending €1 billion. Today’s ESM board decision is a good omen for the discussions on program exit in next week’s Eurogroup.”