Berlin vote on Greek aid deal

German lawmakers will vote on Wednesday on a new aid package for Greece, which needs approval to meet a debt payment deadline a day later.

The vote in the Bundestag will follow euro-area finance ministers’ decision last Friday to endorse the €86bn loan programme. Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose coalition has a parliament majority, moved a planned visit to Milan up a day to today to allow time to attend caucus meetings the night before to argue against opponents in her own parliamentary group.

The new Greek programme will see funds disbursed over three years as the government enacts economic reforms, though prime minister Alexis Tsipras will get a portion immediately to cover looming bills. One of those, a €3.2bn payment to the European Central Bank, is due on Thursday.

There has been “enormous progress” in movement toward a Greek deal, and the International Monetary Fund has “made it remarkably clear” that it will join in a third bailout in the autumn, German deputy finance minister Jens Spahn said at the weekend.

“Every last person in Europe must have understood that membership in the euro isn’t possible without making efforts of your own,” Spahn said.

In a statement after their meeting, the eurozone finance ministers said €26bn will be made available in the first disbursement, including €10bn or a fund to recapitalise Greek banks.



On June 26, we sat outside the first bar to open here since lockdown began on March 15. There are only two bars in the valley. Cafes serve drinks, but these are bar-bars, the kind that stay open after midnight.Damien Enright: Fruit trees are laden with their bounty as we prepare to leave

In October 1986, 52 mute swans, living peacefully on the Tolka in Dublin, were drenched in diesel oil accidentally released into the river. Swan-catchers went into action; only one bird died before they reached it.Richard Collins: Human crisis will offer chance for wild animal research

It's a typically Irish summer’s day of sunshine and occasional showers. Travel restrictions have been eased again and we venture forth to one of nature’s gems, Gougane Barra, deep in the mountains of West Cork.Donal Hickey: Gougane Barra has peace and wildness

When the ferryman pulls away from the pier and the salty spray of the sea hits your face the feeling of release from the mainland is deeply pleasurable. Your island awaits. Whether for a day trip or a holiday, the lure of the islands is as magnetic as ever.The Islands of Ireland: The lure of the less-visited

More From The Irish Examiner