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So much at stake as Greek talks start

Tuesday, July 07, 2015 - 01:46

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has a final chance to present credible reform proposals to an emergency euro zone summit in an attempt to persuade sceptical creditors to reopen aid talks before his country's banks run out of money. Ivor Bennett reports

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He's only been in the job for 24 hours. But big things are expected of Greece's new finance minister. Arriving for an emergency summit in Brussels, Euclid Tsakalotos already seems a much calmer prospect than his predecessor. But it was still a frosty welcome from Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem. (SOUNDBITE) (Dutch) EUROGROUP CHAIRMAN, JEROEN DIJSSELBLOEM, SAYING: "The pressure is especially on the Greeks, the banks are closed and the situation is difficult. I think the Greek government has an interest in coming up with serious and credible solutions soon." For Europe too, though, there's a lot at stake. The dreaded G-word now a very real prospect. EU Economy Commissioner Pierre Moscovici. (SOUNDBITE) (English) EU COMMISSIONER FOR ECONOMIC AND MONETARY AFFAIRS, PIERRE MOSCOVICI, SAYING: "Grexit would be a failure, it would be a terrible mistake, it would be a collective failure, we don't want it, the Commission doesn't want it." Even so, that's no guarantee there'll be an agreement. The bloc appears to be split over how much leniency to show Greece. And time is not on their side. Greece's banks are on the brink of collapse. And it owes 3.5 billion euros to the ECB in less than two weeks. IG's Chris Beauchamp. SOUNDBITE (English) CHRIS BEAUCHAMP, MARKET ANALYST, IG, SAYING: "If they don't make that one they really will be beyond the pail or beyond all hope of rescue I think. So we do have to worry about that one. But of course everything hinges on the next 12 hours. If you get some sort of deal in Europe that'll tide them over beyond that point maybe for a month to allow more room for more negotiations then you can conceivably expect them to get past that deadline. But it's a big if." Another 'if', is Greece's stock exchange. Shut for 9 days so far, it could reopen on Wednesday if there's a deal. For now though the halls and tickers are empty. The stillness here a far cry from the frantic activity in Brussels.

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So much at stake as Greek talks start

Tuesday, July 07, 2015 - 01:46