German lawmakers would refuse to back a further writedown of Greek debt because such a move would amount to a third aid program, a senior ally of Chancellor Angela Merkel said.
“How could we possibly do that?” Michael Meister, the parliamentary finance spokesman for Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union party, said in an interview in Berlin today. “Where would it stop? We’re talking about loans from as recently as last year.” Germany’s lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, which must approve aid, “would not go with it.”
Asked about a report in this week’s Spiegel magazine that Greece’s budget gap may be almost twice as big as envisioned, Meister said that even if it were true, “it’s up to the Greeks” to address the problem. He reiterated that as long as the nominal aid for Greece is not increased, “there are a number of possibilities, including front-loading financial help from the second packet.”