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    Greek Prime minister Alexis Tsipras (L), German Chancellor Angela Merkel (2ndL), European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker (2ndR) and French President Francois Hollande (R) meet at the European Union (EU) headquarters in Brussels on July 7, 2015

    Greece’s New Reform Proposals Enough to Secure More Aid

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    Greece's Gordian Knot: Syriza Tackles Austerity (404)
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    The new reform proposals that Greece has submitted to its creditors are sufficient to secure more aid, but fall short of the promises made to the Greek population, over 60 percent of which voted against lender-proposed austerity measures in a referendum.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said, as quoted by AFP early on Saturday, that the new reform program is "far" from the promises made to the Greek people but is the best possible.

    "There has been positive evaluation of the Greek program," an EU source told AFP, adding that the reforms submitted by the Greek government on Thursday are good enough to form the basis for a new bailout program worth 74 billion euros ($82 billion).

    The Eurozone bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), is considering providing 58 billion euros ($64 billion), while the remaining 16 billion euros ($18 billion) of the aid would come from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to AFP.

    Greece’s new proposal on reforms, needed to secure a third bailout package from its creditors, was received just hours before the deadline for submission was due to expire on Thursday.

    In a Sunday referendum called by Tsipras over 61 percent of the Greeks voted against reforms proposed by the lenders amid stalled talks with Athens over the third bailout package for Greece.

    The reform plan that Greece came up with after the referendum stipulates a primary surplus target of 1 percent of GDP in 2015 and 2, 3 and 3.5 percent in the following three years, respectively.

    The pension reforms are to account for 0.5 percent of GDP savings in 2015 and 1 percent of GDP annually in the following years.

    The reform proposals also include a number of tax hikes, military spending reductions and cuts in farmers’ benefits.

    Greece’s new offer will be tabled at the Saturday’s meeting of 19 Eurozone finance ministers. On Sunday, all 28 EU leaders will gather in Brussels to discuss the Greek financial crisis.

    Greece has received about $270 billion from its main lenders, which include the European Union, the IMF and the European Central Bank (ECB) under two bailout programs, the last of which expired on June 30th. The funds came in exchange for austerity measures, such as pension cuts and tax increases, which have been unpopular with the Greek population.

    Greece’s overall debt stands at about $350 billion.

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    Greece's Gordian Knot: Syriza Tackles Austerity (404)

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