Germany’s Schaeuble Casts Doubt on Chance of Greek Bailout Success

German Finance Minister Schaeuble attends the weekly cabinet meeting at the Chancellery in Berlin
REUTERS/Axel Schmidt

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble questioned whether Greece will ever get a third bailout programme on Thursday, a day after the Greek parliament passed a package of stringent measures required to open negotiations on financial aid.

He said he would submit a request to Germany‘s parliament to vote on opening the talks and said passing the reforms was an “important step”, but it would be hard to make Greece’s debt sustainable without writing some of it off, an idea Berlin considers to be illegal.

Greece is seeking up to 86 billion euros in a third rescue package in return for tougher austerity measures and structural reforms.

“We will now see in the negotiations whether there is even a way to get to a new programme taking into account (Greece’s) financing needs, which have risen incredibly,” he told Deutschlandfunk radio on Thursday.

The International Monetary Fund is leading calls for a deep reduction in Greece’s debt but Germany, the biggest contributor to the euro zone‘s bailout funds, has ruled one out.

Schaeuble, a member of the centre-right Christian Democrats, the party of Chancellor Angela Merkel where there is strong resistance to a new bailout for Greece, said such a step would not be compatible with membership of the currency union.

Read more at Reuters