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Brussels blog by some wire service journalists

Euro countries voice doubts over Greek bailout

By GABRIELE STEINHAUSER and ELENA BECATOROS

BRUSSELS (AP) — Some eurozone countries have strong doubts over whether a second massive bailout can actually save Greece, officials said Wednesday, even as Athens rushed to meet tough conditions to qualify for the euro130 billion ($170 billion) rescue.

The wrangling over Athens’ aid money comes after almost two years of frantic efforts to save Greece from bankruptcy and secure its place in the 17-country currency union.

But circumstances have changed since the eurozone agreed on a first euro110 billion ($145 billion) rescue for Greece back in May 2010.

Several politicians — especially in rich euro countries like Germany, the Netherlands and Finland — have grown tired of Greece repeatedly missing budget targets and failing to implement promised spending cuts, economic reforms and sales of state assets. The measures that have been put into practice, meanwhile, have pushed the country into steep recession, with its economy shrinking 7 percent in the final quarter of 2011 from a year earlier.

READ THE FULL STORY HERE.

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