World Bulletin/News Desk
Greece has inched closer to nailing down the cuts required by its foreign creditors in exchange for financial aid, agreeing 10.8 billion of the 11.5 billion euros worth of cuts demanded, a government official said on Friday.
Finalising the 11.5 billion euros in savings due in 2013-15 is key to a positive review from its lenders, due in Athens next month for a final verdict on whether they will keep funds flowing to the austerity-bound country.
"We're on a good path. Measures worth 10.8 billion euros have been identified," a finance ministry official told Reuters after a meeting of government officials late on Friday, speaking on condition of anonymity.
The official did not elaborate on where the cuts would come from and said talks to finalise the package would continue on Monday.
The Conservative-led coalition has broadly agreed on the measures but has been scrambling to specify the savings, expected mainly from state salaries and pensions, and up to 40,000 public sector layoffs.
The measures have to be approved by Greece's three ruling parties and then by the troika of European Union, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank officials.
Twice bailed-out Greece is dependent on a second, 130-billion-euro rescue deal agreed in March to give it the funds to keep paying public sector wages, pensions and bills.
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras will next week hold his first meetings with European leaders since taking office, striving to assure them Athens will keep its pledges for more austerity.
He is also expected to raise a long-standing proposal that the measures be spread over four instead of two years to soften their impact on a Greek populace enduring the country's worst downturn since World War Two.
Russia's oil output stands at over 10 million barrels per day, the world's largest, but it needs new sources of crude oil, including hard-to-recover deposits and the Arctic, to sustain this level
The strike at Yue Yuen is not just one of China's biggest in recent years, it's also more clearly driven by workers' fears that they have been scammed by an opaque and convoluted welfare payment system.
When the system is in place citizens will be able to buy a limited amount of subsidised fuel, and will have to pay a normal, market price for any extra quantities.
Production in Upper Nile state's Paloch oilfields, where output has not been hampered by the conflict, stood at 159,000 barrels per day this week.
Dragomir Stoynev accused fellow European Union members of a politically-motivated attempt to scupper the project, and urged the bloc to understand the effect that doing so would have on its members.
The drops have come mainly because Japan did not take any cargoes in March and South Korea is not scheduled to take any shipments in April, according to the tanker data.
Japan's finance ministry and central bank have declined to comment on the payments.
But a survey shows that most people believe inflation is speeding up and could surpass 37 percent this year.
A fifth payment of $450 million was due on April 15, contingent on Iran having diluted half of its most sensitive stockpile of nuclear materials
The year-on-year inflation rate in the 18 countries sharing the euro was 0.5 percent in March against 0.7 percent in February, the European Union's statistics office Eurostat said.
Pushed by higher food and shelter costs, the consumer price index rose in March.
Country of origin labels are currently voluntary in the European Union and many of the bloc's governments want to keep it that way
While reverse flows would help cushion the effects of a Russian export cut during mild-demand summer months, analysts say they would not be sufficient in winter.
The tanker, Aegean Dignity, is due to take its load to Italy, the NOC quoted an oil official as saying in a statement on its website
TAP aims at enhancing the security of natural gas supply as well as diversification of gas supplies for the European markets.