Greek austerity bill rises to $16.8 billion for next two years

  • Greece must boost its savings by nearly $2.5 billion over the next two years in order to meet targets under its EU/IMF bailout package, according to a senior finance ministry official.

    Under the terms of its $159 billion bailout agreed in March, Athens is required to identify spending cuts worth 5.5 percent of GDP, equal to around $14.3 billion.

    However, the total size of the austerity package stands at $16.8 billion after taking into account the impact the measures will have on the economy and tax receipts.

    Under the conditions of its bailout, the second since 2010, Greece must cut its budget deficit to below 3 percent of GDP by the end of 2014 from 9.3 percent last year.