EU to approve second bailout package for Greece as recession worsens

The European Union’s top economic official on Tuesday called for rapid approval of a second bailout package for Greece, as figures showed that the recession in the near-bankrupt country had worsened.

Last week, eurozone finance ministers suspended a decision on a 130-billion-euro (171-billion-dollar) rescue package until Athens gave firmer guarantees on meeting the austerity and economic reforms conditions attached to the aid.

EU Economy Commissioner Olli Rehn said a new meeting of the so-called Eurogroup – tentatively scheduled for Wednesday – should cut to the chase and give final approval to the aid for Athens.

Greece needs the money by March 20, when it will have to meet a 14.5-billion-euro bond repayment.

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