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Greece to get September bailout from bilateral loans

Tourists stand in front of Zappeion mansion in Athens
Tourists stand in front of Zappeion mansion in Athens

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Greece will get its next 8 billion euro tranche of emergency loans from the euro zone and the International Monetary Fund in September as planned, provided it meets agreed criteria, the spokesman for the Eurogroup President said on Friday.

"There is no problem at all. The troika will only be in Athens from mid-August onwards and deliver their report at the beginning of September and that is when the decision (on the next disbursement) will be taken," Guy Schuller said.

The troika comprises representatives of the European Commission, the IMF and the European Central Bank. It is responsible for negotiating with Greece the terms of the second financing program, which involves 109 billion in official new financing by mid-2014.

Euro zone leaders called last week for the next tranche of aid for Greece, which is composed of 5.8 billion euros from the euro zone and 2.2 billion euros from the IMF, to be handled through the bailout fund, the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF), instead of via bilateral loans used so far.

Schuller said that because some euro zone parliaments that need to approve new powers for the EFSF agreed on by the leaders would not be able to do so in time for the next disbursement, the next tranche would still be paid out via bilateral loans.

"If the troika decides Greece has met the criteria for the next disbursement, it will be paid out in September. There should be no problem with the IMF since the July 21 decision (of euro zone leaders) gave all the guarantees to the IMF to disburse the next tranche as well," Schuller said.

(Reporting by Jan Strupczewski, editing by David Brunnstrom)

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