UPDATE 1-Still time to solve Greek funding gap -euro zone, IMF

Thu Jun 20, 2013 6:25pm EDT

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* IMF, euro zone say Greece must show plans for reforms

* Emergency funding won't fall short, finance ministers say (Recasts, adds quotes, IMF)

LUXEMBOURG, June 20 (Reuters) - Senior euro zone officials and the International Monetary Fund played down concerns on Thursday that Greece could face a shortfall in its finances, saying there was still time to remedy the situation.

Earlier this week, officials told Reuters that some of Greece's creditors, which include the European Central Bank and the IMF, were reluctant to extend finance to the country because of worries that part of Greece's financing broke ECB rules.

To compound the problem, deep divisions have emerged in Greece's governing coalition over how to reduce the number of workers at its public broadcaster and end a nine-day dispute over the contested closure of the station.

Euro zone finance ministers pressed Greek coalition partners to work together to allow them to conclude their review of Greece's finances and reform program in July and disburse the next tranche of aid, adding that emergency funding would not fall short.

"There is no financing gap, the program is fully financed for at least another year," Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who chairs the meetings of euro zone finance ministers, told a news conference. He said, however, that agreement would need to be reached with Greece by July on the course of its future reforms.

"It is of the utmost importance that the troika can finalise its review at the beginning of July," he said, referring to the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

The International Monetary Fund also called on Greece on Thursday to speedily deliver on its bailout program, adding that doing so would ensure the country encountered "no financing problems."

The impact of any shortfall would be exacerbated by the fact that the IMF would find it difficult to justify its payments to Athens because its rules require Greece to be fully financed for at least a year.

Greek officials have said that discussions had already started on closing the gap, which is estimated at up to 2 billion euros. They said options could include requesting an earlier payment of rescue loan tranches or issuing short-term debt.

In a report earlier this month, the IMF said it projected that a financing gap of 4 billion euros would open in the second half of 2014 and that additional financing should be quickly found to cover it. (Reporting by Robin Emmott, Ingrid Melander and John O'Donnell; Editing by Peter Cooney)

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