World Bulletin / News Desk
Greek political leaders are still haggling over the details of 12 billion euros worth of budget cuts needed to release further tranches of its international bailout, government officials said on Thursday.
Officials, declining to be named, had told Reuters on Wednesday that the Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and his finance minister had agreed the list of measures to be put to coalition party leaders and the European Union and IMF.
"There is a basic agreement (between party leaders), we're moving forward to the final negotiations," Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras told reporters after a meeting of the three leaders in Samaras' consevative-led government.
One of the three leaders, Fotis Kouvelis warned that sticking points remained.
"There was agreement on the basic framework. There are outstanding issues," said Kouvelis, head of the moderate Democratic Left party.
Neither Stournaras nor Kouvelis specified what issues the party chiefs had made progress on and whether the deal on a "basic framework" went beyond a similar broad agreement they said they had notched up a month ago.
The coalition has been haggling for weeks over the package demanded by international lenders keeping the country afloat, with Samaras's allies sharply opposed to across-the-board cuts in wages and pensions as well as plans to fire civil servants.
Pressure is growing on the party chiefs to strike a deal of some sort before the troika of European Commission, European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund return to Athens early next week.
The troika's blessing of the package is a pre-requisite for Greece to secure its next round of bailout cash, without which the country faces certain bankruptcy and a potentially disastrous euro zone exit.
Kouvelis and Samaras's other ally, Socialist chief Evangelos Venizelos, are under rising pressure from their voter base to fight the austerity package, which includes a new round of wage, pension and welfare benefit cuts.
On Wednesday, nearly 70,000 Greeks marched to parliament chanting "We won't submit to the troika (of lenders)" and "EU, IMF Out!" as part of a general strike against the cuts.
Germany’s ambassador to Ankara says German companies operating in Turkey should think about tomorrow
After months of disagreement, OPEC members last week hammered out a deal to cut oil output for the first time in eight years.
Ali Shareef al-Emadi predicted growth of 3.4 percent in 2017, in line with an International Monetary Fund estimate and up from a projected 3.2 percent this year.
"Many citizens in advanced economies are facing heightened uncertainty, lamenting a loss of control and losing trust in the system," Carney said in a speech at Liverpool's John Moores University.
European stock markets are also set for a weak start, with Italy underperforming as investors brace for turbulence and political crisis in the euro zone's heavily indebted third-largest economy.
The euro tumbled on Monday after Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said he would resign as he conceded defeat in a referendum over his plan to reform the constitution
Rouhani's 2017-2018 budget is based on oil prices of $50 per barrel, up from $40 last year, with a focus on unemployment, water resources, railways and the environment.
Turkish parliament has already ratified the deal on construction of ‘TurkStream’ natural gas pipeline
The September rate was revised to 9.9 percent from the 10 percent first given last month.
Many analysts had expected the producers' cartel to fail to reach a deal as major players like Iran, Iraq and Saudi Arabia remained divided ahead of the meeting.
The report, which collects views of economists, business contacts and others in the 12 Federal Reserve districts in preparation for the monetary policy meeting next month, noted improved retail sales and home construction in most regions.
If the cartel does not reach a deal to cut output, prices could fall below $40 a barrel
European air travel giant Lufthansa has been battling its own pilots over pay and conditions for more than two years.
Failure to get an accord on Wednesday could send oil prices tumbling and deal a further blow to the credibility of the 56-year-old Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.
Around midday, shares in Italian lenders Unicredit and Banco Popolare were down 4 percent compared with Friday's closing levels.