IMF Approves $4.3 Billion for Greece

Posted July 8th, 2011 at 6:35 pm (UTC-5)
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The International Monetary Fund has approved the release of about $4.3 billion as part of an effort to help Greece pull back from an impending debt default.

The IMF's executive board approved the package Friday.

The payment is part of a $156 bailout package from the IMF and European Union that was agreed on last year.

New IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said in a statement that while Greece has made progress and its economy is rebalancing, many important structural reforms still have to be implemented.

She noted that significant policy challenges remain.

Euro zone finance ministers have already cleared the way for Greece to receive another $17 billion by July 15, as part of last year's IMF-EU bailout.

Officials say that should be enough to help Greece survive for a few more months, before it again runs out of money.

Greek lawmakers recently approved an austerity plan that triggered violent protests but was a condition for international aid.

EU officials had warned that Greece had no choice but to adopt the austerity measures, which call for raising taxes, cutting spending and selling state-owned assets.