BERLIN (Reuters) - German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble told lawmakers at a closed-door session on Wednesday that Greece’s lenders remained divided over how to fill a 14 billion euro hole in its finances and how to define debt sustainability for the euro zone’s weakest link, participants told Reuters.
European finance ministers, the European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) failed for a second straight week on Tuesday to reach a deal to free up new aid for Greece, and are to meet again on Monday.
Schaeuble met members of parliament on Wednesday morning to explain the failure of the negotiations, which pushed down the euro and prompted sharp attacks from German opposition parties.
One participant said Schaeuble had told members of his conservative party that lenders had failed to resolve the issue of whether 2020 or 2022 would be used as a benchmark for Greek debt sustainability and also how to fill a 14 billion euro gap in the country’s finances through 2014.
The source said Schaeuble had explained that the ECB believed Greece could raise 9 billion euros itself by issuing short-term debt. Another Christian Democrat lawmaker said the minister had told participants that a debt buyback could be part of the solution.
Reporting by Andreas Rinke; Writing by Noah Barkin, Editing by Gareth Jones