Published: Wed, July 26, 2017
Culture | By Henry Herrera

Greece says 5-yr bond issue important step towards full market return

Greece says 5-yr bond issue important step towards full market return

He will meet Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos and Bank of Greece Governor Yannis Stournaras, among others.

Greece now has no need to draw money from the bond markets - but it is a necessary psychological milestone.

The Greek economy almost collapsed in 2010 under a mountain of debt and the government had to be bailed out by its eurozone partners.

Greece has made much progress since 2010 and investor confidence is returning to the country, European Commission Economic and Financial Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici said Tuesday, as the country held a sale of its government bonds for the first time since 2014.

Speaking after the bond issue was announced, the EU's economy commissioner, Pierre Moscovici, described the public spending cuts imposed on Greece since it nearly went bust as "too tough" but "necessary", adding there was now "light at the end of austerity".

In a sign that the country is turning a corner the economy is projected to grow by 2.1 percent this year - after no growth at all in 2016.

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ATHENS, July 24 (Reuters) - In its first attempt to return to the bond market in three years as its debt crisis eases, Greece on Monday invited holders of its 4.75 percent outstanding bonds maturing in 2019 to tender them for cash, along with a plan to offer new five-year paper.

Its return to the markets had been predicted over recent weeks, after the country's largest creditor - the European Stability Mechanism - said last month that Greece should develop a strategy to end its three-month exile.

Earlier this month, eurozone finance ministers approved the latest €8.5 billion-euro disbursement from a third worldwide bailout, just in time for Athens to meet major debt repayments.

Last week, the International Monetary Fund agreed to a new loan "in principle" worth $1.8 billion to Greece.

Debt relief has been the major bone of contention between the government of Tsipras and the eurozone, which had delayed the deal to disburse the latest bailout funds.

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