|European Finance Ministers Apply More Pressure To Greece To Restructure Before It Can Receive More Funds|
|Friday, November 02, 2012 11:10|
European finance ministers said Greece must make take more fiscal restructuring measures before it will be allowed to receive more funding from the bailout funds it needs to avoid defaulting on its loans.
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The group called on Greece to complete negotiations swiftly with its troika of creditors—the European Commission, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the European Central Bank.
The process in Greece still faces a great deal of uncertainty. After the government released details of the austerity measures mandated by the aid package, labor unions announced a 48-hour strike next week when the parliamentary vote is to be held.
The austerity measures include raising the retirement age by two years to 67, cutting salaries and pensions, and increasing taxes.
The Democratic Left, the smallest segment of Greece’s coalition government, said it would withdraw support from the budget package if it includes changes to the labor laws that the party opposes.
Meanwhile, Portugal passed the sharpest tax rate hikes in history as it tries to meet the budget targets mandated by its bailout package. The nation’s ruling center-right ruling coalition supports the move but the opposition Socialists are challenging them in court.
Many economists say that, without some type of debt forgiveness, Greece ultimately will have to leave the Eurozone.