Eurozone Approves Three-year Bailout For Greece

By Karen FriarMarketWatch Pulse

Eurozone finance ministers have agreed to Greece's request for a three-year bailout, after the Greek parliament on Thursday voted to approve tough reform measures needed to unlock further financial aid. "On the basis of a positive assessment by the institutions, which concluded that the authorities have implemented the first set of four measures in a timely and overall satisfactory manner ... we reached today a decision to grant in principle a 3-year ESM stability support to Greece, subject to the completion of relevant national procedures," the Eurogroup said in a statement Thursday. The reforms are part of a bailout deal agreed Monday by the eurozone and Athens, and must now be approved by parliaments in a handful of the currency union's members. The Eurogroup decision means negotiations can now continue on the bailout under the ESM, or European Stability Mechanism, program. The bailout mechanism has so far only provided loans to Spain and Cyprus. Greece's previous bailout program, which expired at the end of June, was partly granted through the temporary crisis mechanism, the European Financial Stability Facility.

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