World Bulletin / News Desk
Greece will frontload budget cuts to achieve a primary surplus in 2013 for the first time in many years but its economy will shrink for a sixth consecutive year by up to 4 percent, a government official told Reuters.
The government will unveil a draft budget draft later on Monday, aiming to satisfy international lenders but expected to prolong the economic pain of the Greek people.
It will include more cuts in public sector pay, pensions and welfare benefits as part of an 11.5 billion euro ($14.8 billion)austerity package of savings that will be spread out over the next two years.
Greece's economic output has declined by a quarter since 2008 in a vicious spiral of austerity and recession, with the most heavily indebted euro zone nation repeatedly falling behind in meeting targets set under its EU/IMF bailouts and at risk of being forced out of the single currency area.
The official, who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity, said Athens will frontload a big chunk of the new spending cuts under negotiation with inspectors from the troika of the European Union, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund.
"The draft budget will include 7.8 billion euros in cuts for 2013," the official said.
Belt-tightening has taken a toll on economic activity, suppressing domestic demand and driving the jobless rate to a record 24.4 percent.
The official said the budget will aim for a primary surplus of 1.1 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). He said GDP was expected to contract by 3.8 to 4 percent next year.
This year's primary deficit - which excludes debt servicing costs - is expected to exceed a targeted 1.0 percent of GDP. The finance ministry sees the primary deficit at 1.5 percent of national output in 2012.
Nick Letchford, managing director of the group that owns the Old Shoreditch Station cafe, decided to install the machine after noticing the popularity of bitcoins among his customers working nearby in the digital industries.
Varying degrees of drought are hitting almost two thirds of the limited arable land across Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, the Palestinian territories and Iraq.
Turkey deems Iranian gas too expensive compared with other suppliers like Russia and Azerbaijan, an assertion rejected by Tehran.
Satoshi Nakamoto, a name known to legions of bitcoin traders, practitioners and boosters around the world, appeared to lose his anonymity on Thursday after Newsweek published a story that said he lived in Temple City, California, just east of Los Angeles.
BP's exploration and production sharing agreement with Libya covers onshore acreage in Ghadames, near the border between Libya, Algeria and Tunisia, and offshore acreage in the central Sirte basin
There are discussions at high levels within the U.S. government on how to use U.S. natural gas resources
The judicial sources said on Thursday that prosecutors suspected the companies of working together on campaigns to favour Lucentis, including promoting it to local doctors
Scotland's Energy Minister Fergus Ewing offered to meet Shell to discuss the future of the oil and gas industry if Scotland votes to end its 307-year tie with England
European Commission President said that from a purely financial standpoint the crisis in Ukraine should not have much impact on the euro zone but there was potential for far greater instability
The rouble-traded MICEX lost 1.9 percent on the news to trade at 1,322.2 points. It had earlier traded in positive territory.
If tensions eventually escalate into economic sanctions, the single biggest point of vulnerability for the Gulf would probably be the Dolphin Energy pipeline carrying about 2 billion cubic feet of gas per day from Qatar to the UAE and Oman
The former Soviet republic is strategically important to Moscow as the main gas transit route to the European Union, Russia's biggest customer
Iran will soon receive a second installment of previously frozen assets which are being returned to it under an interim nuclear agreement with world powers
Economic growth jumped to 5.2 percent in the last quarter, but Romania remains the second poorest country in the European Union
Brent crude prices decreased by 1.8 percent, more than US$2 per barrel on Wednesday.
The southeast European country sets out to achieve price stability by increasing the share of private entities in its state dominated energy sector.