The International Monetary Fund has said it will not participate in a new bailout for Greece until an “explicit and concrete agreement” on debt relief is reached by the country’s eurozone creditors.

The Guardian reports:

On Wednesday, Christine Lagarde told the IMF’s board, made up of representatives of its member countries, that an IMF team should be sent to Greece. But the official said: “The board would not support a scheme that did not meet medium-term sustainability.”

Greece’s debt-to-GDP ratio has shot up to 175%, from the 120% level when it first received a bailout from the “troika” of the IMF, the European Central Bank and the European commission in 2010.

News of the IMF board’s tough line emerged as Tsipras challenged members of Syriza to back the decision to sign up for fresh spending cuts and reforms demanded by the country’s creditors. …

The IMF’s own debt sustainability analysis, published in the aftermath of the negotiations between Tsipras and his eurozone partners earlier this month, suggests that the country’s debt burden will quickly become unmanageable without a lengthy moratorium on repayments, perhaps of up to 30 years, or a reduction in the face value of the debt. The IMF official said the fund stood by that analysis.

Read more here.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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