(Greece) – After some debate, the Greek Parliament has approved the changes required of the international creditors in order to unlock new bailout funds. Greece needs this money to pay off some of their upcoming loans but the creditors have said that Greece needs to agree on all the austerity measures required of them in order to release them. The Greek Parliament has voted and agreed to all the changes after debating for several months and this eventually caused the Eurogroup leaders to approve the bailout. However, the lenders have released a new batch of amendments that require Greece to adjust civil service salories and make changes to the country’s non-performing loans.
Initially, the Greek Finance Minister had said that Greece may have trouble meeting some of these demands. The changes were requested last week, shortly after the third bailout was approved. Many feared that these disagreements would lead to a delay in the release of funds, which Greece badly needs. It was unclear how long it would take both parties to resolve their differences. However, now that parliament has approved these changes, Greece is now back on track to receive bailout funds. From the beginning, the austerity measures had always been aimed at reducing government spending.
Greece’s parliament met on June 2, 2016 when Alexis Tsipras, the Prime Minister, called for a session to discuss these changes. This is looked at as the final round of austerity measures that needed approval before Greece could get its funds. The first of the austerity measures were implemented early this week, when the government raised the value added tax from 23% to 24%, a move that is designed to generate additional revenue. Among those items taxed include things like coffee and beer, which are staples to Greece’s cafe culture. This newest bailout will unfreeze 10.3 billion Euros of badly needed funds, with the first installment coming sometime in June.