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Business

Greece submits reform list ahead of deadline

Greek and eurozone officials have confirmed Athens has submitted a new and more far-reaching list of reform proposals to unlock badly needed bailout money. Talks with international creditors are to start shortly.

The leftist government in Athens said it had given the final touches to a new and

more comprehensive list of economic reforms

it was willing to implement in order to unlock remaining bailout funds from its international creditors.

Citing eurozone officials, Reuters said the Greek government had submitted the list to the Brussels Group of lenders on Friday, that is ahead of a previously agreed Monday deadline.

Nikos Filis from the leftist Syriza party told DPA news agency the list contained 18 reforms, which - if carried through - would enable the nation to boost revenues by 3 billion euros ($3.26 billion) later this year, while wage and pension cuts were not part of the proposals.

Will it be enough?

Athens indicated the measures included more steps to fight tax evasion using a direct online system to connect businesses and tax offices, issuing licenses for online gambling and increasing value-added tax.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' government said it was hopeful the measures would improve investor sentiment and boost tax revenues, while not mentioning any other essential offers to please Greece's creditors.

The reforms list submission came as Greece's government denied a report in Germany's "Bild" newspaper that its outspoken Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis was considering resigning.

A special lenders' working group is to review the list of proposals before it is sent for eurozone finance ministers to assess. Greece urgently needs fresh bailout installments to avoid bankruptcy and a forced exit from the single-currency bloc.

DPA quoted a government official as saying that Greece would no longer be able to
service its public debt unless creditors proceeded immediately with the disbursement of more bailout aid.

"The government has made it clear on all levels of the eurozone and the International Monetary Fund that it will not continue to service its public debt using its own resources if creditors do not proceed immediately with the disbursement of bailout installments - which have been delayed since 2014."

hg/jd (Reuters, dpa)

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