EU countries approve 7 billion euro short-term loan to Greece

BRUSSELS: The European Union formally approved a short-term loan of 7.16 billion euros to Greece on Friday, while offering guarantees to non-euro nations that their taxpayers would not be at risk, the EU Commissioner for the euro said on Friday.


“We have an agreement on bridge financing. This agreement is backed by the 28 member states,” Valdis Dombrovskis told reporters, adding that the bridge loan would allow Greece to meet a huge payment to the European Central Bank on Monday.

Earlier on Thursday, Greek lawmakers voted in favour of a deeply contentious bailout package, clearing the first hurdle towards securing a euro zone rescue but leaving the radical left government weakened.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras managed to push through a series of unpopular reforms demanded by the country’s international creditors, despite scenes of anger over austerity in Athens, where protesters threw firebombs at police.