ATHENS — Greece on Feb. 19 sent its proposals to break a deadlock with European creditors over its frozen bailout program and end uncertainty over the debt-heavy country’s future in the euro.
Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who heads the meetings of Eurozone finance ministers, said he received a Greek request “for a six-month extension.” No further details were provided.
An EU official, who spoke only on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter, said a meeting of the 19 Eurozone finance ministers would take place in Brussels on Feb. 20.
Athens has said it will request an extension of the loan program that has kept it from bankruptcy since 2010.
Crucially, however, it is unclear to what extent the weeks-old radical left-led government will accept to continue the spending cuts, high taxation and reforms that have been a key condition of the bailout program.
Greek shares rose 2 percent on the news in morning trading, while the Euro Stoxx 50 index was flat.
Government spokesman Gavriil Sakellaridis said earlier Feb. 19 that Greece is doing everything it can to reach a speedy and mutually acceptable deal with the other 18 European countries that use the euro.
But he insisted, speaking to private Skai TV, that the new government would not accept further austerity measures to secure continuation of the bailout support Greece badly needs.
Eurozone finance ministers have given Greece until Feb. 20 to request an extension of its current austerity and reform program.