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Eurozone countries 'warned to plan for Greek exit' - report

A group of EU finance advisors agreed to issue the instruction on Monday, according to Reuters.

Greek finance minister Giorgos Zanias at a conference in Athens last week
Greek finance minister Giorgos Zanias at a conference in Athens last week
Image: Petros Giannakouris/AP/Press Association Images

EUROZONE COUNTRIES HAVE been told to draw up plans for how to cope if Greece is forced to exit the single currency, according to a report.

Reuters cites three EU officials as saying that the Eurogroup Working Group, a set of advisors to eurozone finance ministers, agreed to issue the instruction during a conference call on Monday.

“The EWG agreed that each eurozone country should prepare a contingency plan [...] for the potential consequences of a Greek exit,” one official said.

Meanwhile markets around the world have been on the slide today amid fears over the future of the eurozone. A number of European leaders including Taoiseach Enda Kenny are meeting in Brussels tonight for talks which are expected to focus on identifying stimulus measures.

The Dow Jones index fell by 1.37 per cent, with the FTSE 100 down 2.17 per cent and the Nikkei down 1.98 per cent. The Irish Stock Exchange ISEQ index was down by 1.71 per cent at the time of writing.

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has urged Greece to stick with its austerity programme as it heads towards an election due on June 17 which is widely seen as a referendum on its eurozone membership.

“I wish there were an easier way out of the crisis Greece is facing. The fact is that the least difficult way is the full implementation of the second (bailout) programme agreed by Greece and its international partners,” he said according to the Press Association.

More: Innovation? Controversy? What’s on the table at today’s meeting of EU leaders?>

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Michael Freeman

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