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Greece will miss an IMF repayment (but promises to pay before July)

Its other repayments will be combined into one.

Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis
Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis
Image: Petros Giannakouris/AP/Press Association Images

Updated 8.47pm

THE INTERNATIONAL MONETARY Fund (IMF) has confirmed that Greece will be bundling four debt repayments due in June at the end of the month, averting the possibility of a Greek default Friday.

“The Greek authorities have informed the Fund today that they plan to bundle the country’s four June payments into one, which is now due on June 30,” IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said, citing rules allowing debtor countries to regroup “multiple principal payments falling due in a calendar month.”

This means it will miss Friday’s repayment of €300 million.

Greece’s first €300 million payment had been due on Friday, with cash-strapped Athens slated to hand another €1.3 billion over on later dates in June.

The move comes at a critical time for Greece and its IMF, European Union and European Central Bank creditors, as they push for a breakthrough in four-month negotiations to unlock €7.2 billion in bailout funds Athens desperately needs to honour debt payments.

With divisions still remaining on reform and austerity conditions demanded of Athens in exchange for the funds, worries of a possible default have risen with the flurry of debt repayments looming.

“We used an option that IMF rules offer us, and which give us additional time for negotiating,” a Greek government source said.

The last country to take this kind of action was Zambia in the 1970s, the Financial Times reports.

Greece has presented a 47-page blueprint on how to overhaul the struggling Greek economy without resorting to harsh austerity measures and cuts.

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Creditors, meanwhile, have tabled a rival plan drawn up without Greece at a meeting in Berlin on Monday attended by the leaders of Germany and France.

Discussions that have taken place throughout the week are slated to resume on Friday.

© – AFP 2015Additional reporting by The Associated Press and Nicky Ryan.  Originally published 6.47pm

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