Greece to clear five-billion-euro debt hurdle: debt agency

Greece on Friday was in the process of repaying a five-billion-euro treasury bill with money raised from another debt issue this week, thus avoiding a payment default, a debt management agency source said.

Public sector employees demonstrate in central Athens on November 13, 2012, against the expected layoffs in the public sector. Greece on Friday was in the process of repaying a five-billion-euro treasury bill with money raised from another debt issue this week and avoiding a payment default, a debt management agency source said.

"The payment is proceeding without problems, the necessary money is present," an agency source told AFP. He did not specify when the process would be complete.

Faced with a financing gap from a stalled EU-IMF loan instalment that is still pending, Greece raised the necessary money earlier in the week with a sale of three-month and one-month treasury bills.

It drew 4.0 billion euros ($5.18 billion) on Tuesday and added another 938 million euros two days later.

Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras warned last month that the country would run out of money on Friday without the prompt release of funds from the European Union and International Monetary Fund.

Worth 31.2 billion euros overall, the EU-IMF loan payment was supposed to have been disbursed by July but was held back owing to reform delays and protracted political uncertainty after a four-month electoral campaign in Greece.

Eurozone finance ministers will meet on November 20 to discuss whether Athens will at last be given the funds, which are part of Greece's second EU-IMF rescue package.

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Writer: AFP
Position: News agency