Tusk rises to the moment
PR dla Zagranicy
European Council President Donald Tusk has been hailed “the father” of the agreement between the EU and Greece.
Donald Tusk during negotiations this weekend. Photo: PAP
“Sorry, but there is no way you are leaving this room,” the former Polish prime minister is reported to have said at a critical moment around 6am on Monday, the UK daily The Financial Times reports.
Greek PM Alexis Tsipras and Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, decided after 14 hours of talks they had reached a dead end. “As the two leaders made for the door it was Tusk who moved to prevent the fatigue and frustration from triggering a historic rupture for the eurozone,” the FT writes.
Tusk said the eurozone is now ready to talk about assistance from the European Stability Mechanism for Greece in return for "major reforms" and financial assistance for the country.
Thanks to Tusk's intervention a privatisation fund has been set up which will be located in Greece and managed by Greeks, and not in Luxembourg managed by Germans, as the German contingent reportedly wanted.
Athens will now start selling off state assets worth EUR 50 billion, with the income to go into the fund co-supervised by its creditors. Half of the proceeds will recapitalise Greek banks and the other half will pay down Greek debts. A transfer of state-owned companies into a fund in Luxembourg was seen to be undermining Greek sovereignty and was a main stumbling block for Athens.
“We have an agreekment,” Tusk told the the press after almost 17 hours of talks between eurozone leaders. (jh)