• Germany's news in English

Berlin has not ruled out Greek eurozone exit

The Local · 13 Nov 2011, 09:01

Published: 13 Nov 2011 09:01 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Chancellor Angela Merkel is prepared for the possibility that Greece's new government refuses to carry out the tough austerity programme required of it in return for the next tranche of the EU-IMF bailout, the magazine reports.

German finance ministry experts were working on one scenario, under which a Greek exit from the eurozone went off without too much difficulty.

Greece's departure might even be good for the eurozone, because "without the weakest link the chain of member states in the zone would be strengthened," the magazine reported.

But it had contingency plans for a second, more serious scenario, in which Italy and Spain found themselves in turn targeted by the markets.

A third, doomsday scenario, was also being studied, according to Der Spiegel.

In this one Greece defaulted completely – unable to cope with the consequences of a return to its former national currency the drachma – and dragged other vulnerable countries down with it.

Merkel made it clear to reporters in Berlin on Thursday that Germany was committed to keeping the eurozone at its current size and standing by its struggling partners.

"We have a single goal and it is to stabilize the eurozone as it is today, to make it more competitive, to make progress in balancing budgets," she said, promising to do all it could to work with the new administration in Athens.

On Saturday Greece's new Prime Minister Lucas Papademos held urgent talks with Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy on the bailout for his debt-hit country.

Both Sarkozy and Merkel underlined the need for Greece to implement the measures it had agreed to in return for the next instalment of the international bailout, a statement from Sarkozy's office said after Saturday's talks. "The payment of the next tranche can only take place when a decisive step has been taken in this matter," the statement said.

Story continues below…

The new power-sharing administration in Athens will have to force through the painful austerity measures exacted as the price for the rescue package.


The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

12:18 November 13, 2011 by Englishted
What will happen if they take the money but the "austerity " measures are not accepted by the people who they affect after not being a vote on them thanks to threats.Invasion?
14:10 November 13, 2011 by Eastard
The Greeks have voted on the austerity measures every year for the past 15 years... NO... They have elected officials that provide them what they want... to live as though voting could fix financial mismanagement. Greek leadership has been dishonest to both it's people and the Eurozone whom they have committed performance to. To say the Greeks could vote themselves prosperity if foolish. It would be like voting to rid oneself of a disease... I do hope that the new leadership not polished in the Greek shine, can explain to the people of Greece that this is not an optional change... Their opportunity is to work their way out of excessive existance or collapse and have a catastrophic change in livestyle.. They are much to used to not paying back borrowed money... I really hope a lesson in economics will help them rally... and actually go back to work...

As an outsider I found it almost comical that their unions who have rasied so much hell about how sorry the government was and how they should strike their way to riches... has gotten real quite... The union leadership if successful at keeping the Greeks out out work would become responsible to the negative outcome... something they are very good at avoiding... Union leadership must have someone else to blame lest they be responsible... I hope the Greeks get smart and recognize the at the root of their financial demise are these union leaders who have made the whole economy into a train wreck... Time to get off the train..
Today's headlines
Creepy clown scare spreads to Germany
Two of the clowns were apparently equipped with chainsaws. Photo: Pedro Pardo / AFP file picture

Police said Friday five incidents involving so-called scary clowns had occurred in two north German town, including one assailant who hit a man with a baseball bat, amid fears that Halloween could spark a rash of similar attacks.

Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd