MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Eurozone finance ministers have approved Greece's reforms and gave the go-ahead for the disbursement of a further 1.1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) to the indebted country under the European Stability Mechanism's (ESM) second tranche, the Eurogroup said Monday.
"The Eurogroup welcomes the implementation by the Greek authorities of the set of 15 milestones in the context of the first review of the ESM programme… The implementation of the milestones paves the way for the ESM Board of Directors to approve the remaining disbursement of EUR 1.1 bn under the second tranche for debt servicing needs," the group of ministers said in a statement.
A further 1.7 billion euros will be disbursed after Greece's debt arrears payments are assessed later, the statement added.
The finance ministers gathered in Luxembourg earlier in the day for a Eurogroup meeting, where Greece's debt issue dominated the agenda.
In May, Eurogroup ministers held talks on new loans for Greece, agreeing on a 10.3 billion euro aid package, which is part of the 86 billion-euro package. In June, the European Stability Mechanism disbursed about 7.5 billion euros to Greece. Athens was told to fulfill 15 conditions in order to receive the remainder. On September 27, the Greek Parliament approved a reform bill, meeting the demands of the European Union and International Monetary Fund (IMF) creditors.
The Greek debt crisis erupted in 2010 with a number of austerity packages adopted by the parliament and several bailout payments provided by the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF. The loans, however, only resulted in increasing the country’s debt.