GREECE_GETS_HELP - GREECE GETS HELP By DAN BILEFSKY and...

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GREECE GETS HELP By DAN BILEFSKY and LANDON THOMAS Jr. Published: May 2, 2010 ATHENS - Greece announced Sunday that it had reached an agreement on a long-delayed rescue package that will require years of painful fiscal belt-tightening, but the deal probably will not defuse the potential threats to other European countries also suffering from mounting debts and troubled economies. "I have done and will do everything not to let the country go bankrupt," Prime Minister George Papandreou said in a televised address that urged Greeks to accept "great sacrifices" to avoid "catastrophe." The bailout, which was worked out over weeks of negotiations with the International Monetary Fund and Greece's European partners, calls for as much as €110 billion, or $145 billion, in loans intended to stave off an immediate debt default and stop the spread of economic contagion to other parts of the region. But analysts warned that Greece itself has not yet solved its fundamental problems and that other sovereign debt crises could arise as lenders and market speculators turn their attention to a handful of similarly vulnerable nations. "The immediate impact may be soothing, but the inflammation will soon show up again," predicted Edward Hugh, an economist in Barcelona who writes for the influential Fistful of Euros blog. "My feeling is the rot has now gone too far." In Greece, Mr. Papandreou, the scion of a Socialist dynasty whose father, Andreas Papandreou, helped erect the sprawling Greek welfare state when he was prime minister in the 1980s, sought to embolden Greeks to accept what is expected to be the greatest overhaul of the state in a generation. "I want to tell Greeks very honestly," he said, "that we have a big trial ahead of us." While the bailout provides a lifeline to the Greek government, similar challenges lie in wait for Portugal, Spain and perhaps Italy, the other countries on Europe's deficit-wracked southern tier. Moreover, outside the nations that rely on the euro as their common currency, Latvia, Hungary and Romania are all faltering in their own efforts to meet economic and fiscal goals set in conjunction with the I.M.F. And even Britain, which has its own currency and so far has had little trouble borrowing at reasonable
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GREECE_GETS_HELP - GREECE GETS HELP By DAN BILEFSKY and...

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