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Greece To Qualify For Next Loan Disbursement

BRUSSELS (UPI) — Lenders in Europe say they’ve reached an agreement with Greece on steps Athens must take to qualify for the next installment of an international loan.

The so-called troika made up of the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the International Monetary Fund said Monday that the group had agreed with Athens on reforms that would be needed to qualify for $10.4 billion in loans, CNNMoney reported.

The $10.4 billion represents the next tranche that is part of a $309 billion loan package set up for Greece.

The latest disbursement is to be set up in stages, which would be available when Greece reaches various financial targets, the troika said in a joint statement.

EU officials said Greece has agreed to cut healthcare spending and push forward with targets for cutting back on civil service employees and saving money by training and re-assigning public sector workers.

But some analysts are saying the rescue program, which began in 2001, is at a delicate stage. Forced by lenders to take severe austerity measures, unemployment in Greece is near 27 percent.

As such, the troika is making some concessions, agreeing to lower the target for funds Athens was expected to raise through privatization of public businesses.

An attempt in June to sell state gas company DEPA failed to come to fruition. As such, the troika has agreed that Greece will fall short of its goal of raising $3.3 billion through sales of government assets this year, CNNMoney reported.

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