17 Jul 2015

German MPs to vote on Greece bailout

8:34 pm on 17 July 2015

The German parliament is to vote on whether to allow negotiations on Greece's €86 billion bailout deal.

Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel Photo: AFP

Germany is one of several eurozone states that must give the green light before the rescue deal can go ahead.

Greek MPs voted for the bailout, including hard-hitting austerity measures, on Thursday. However, the government lost its majority.

The German vote comes hours after the news that Greek banks, shut nearly three weeks ago, will reopen on Monday.

The announcement was made after the European Central Bank (ECB) raised the level of emergency funding available.

However, credit controls limiting cash withdrawals to €60 a day will only be eased gradually, officials say.

Earlier, eurozone ministers also agreed a €7 billion bridging loan from an EU-wide fund to keep finances afloat.

The moves came after Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras won a parliamentary vote on the bailout proposals in the early hours of Thursday.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has urged MPs to back the deal, saying she was "absolutely convinced" it was the way forward.

The vote is scheduled to begin at 10am local time.

Austria's parliament is also due to vote on the bailout package on Friday. Both the French and Finnish parliaments have already backed the deal.

Meanwhile, there have been fresh calls for Greek debt relief measures from International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Christine Lagarde - echoing a call from Greek PM Alexis Tsipras.

Ms Lagarde told France's Europe 1 the IMF would participate in a "complete" Greek package that includes debt restructuring, as well as an "in depth reform" of the Greek economy.

Greece has debts of €320 billion and is seeking its third international bailout. Last month it became the first developed country to fail to make a repayment on a loan from the IMF.

The bank closures have been one of the most visible signs of the crisis.

From Monday, a weekly limit on withdrawals may replace a daily cap, the deputy finance minister suggested.

"If someone doesn't want to take €60 on Monday and wants to take it on Tuesday, for instance, they can withdraw €120, or €180 on Wednesday," Deputy Finance Minister Dimitris Mardas told ERT television

-BBC