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Greece "close" to achieving vital bond swap deal

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Greece "close" to achieving vital bond swap deal
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Officials in Greece said on Thursday they were hopeful of securing agreement from more than 75 per cent of private creditors for a bond exchange
that is needed for it to get 130 billion euros in bailout funds.

The EU and IMF cash is conditional on a majority of big banks and other private investors agreeing to the proposals and is vital to prevent Greece defaulting on its debts.

Earlier Greece’s finance minister Evangelos Venizelos told parliament that officials hoped to announce drastic cuts to the Greek public debt shortly.

“For the first time in decades, in the history of the country, we have come together as a parliament, a government and reduced the debt,” he said.

The government hopes when it officially announces the results of the bond swap on Friday, the slow process of kickstarting the depressed Greek economy can finally begin.
New unemployment figures show Greece’s jobless total reached a record 21 per cent in December and
more than half under 25-year-olds are now out of work.