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IMF, EU split emerges over Greece cuts

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IMF, EU split emerges over Greece cuts


A new row is brewing between the International Monetary Fund and eurozone leaders over the speed of austerity measures being imposed on Greece.

Germany is refusing to soften targets that Athens needs to meet to receive its next tranche of bailout cash.

Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble wants to wait for the upcoming review of Greece’s national finances by so-called ‘troika’ officials.

His comments come after IMF Chief Christine Lagarde called for officials to give Greece more breathing space.

New research released this week suggests growth is being weakened more seriously than previously thought by aggressive spending cuts.

Lagarde also warned that public debt in developed countries stands at “wartime levels” and remains the biggest threat to the global economy.

Protesters gathered outside the IMF’s annual meeting in Tokyo on Friday complaining that international finance chiefs are bailing out banks but not helping ordinary people.

Some said they are suspicious of the IMF’s role in advising nations.

“They say they are fighting poverty but I don’t think they’re making any progress at all. Rather, I believe they are the problem,” said one protester.

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