Varoufakis: ‘A deal with creditors more or less done’

Greece’s Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said a deal on his country’s debt would be agreed regardless of the outcome of Sunday’s referendum.

Varoufakis said if people vote Yes to the proposed bailout terms the Greek government would sign up to the deal on the table.

However, if they vote No, as his government is urging, a deal would also be done, he said.

“During this week of impasse, we’ve had some very decent proposals coming from official Europe, confidentially, and a deal is more or less done,” he told RTE’s Morning Ireland programme.

“The difference between a Yes and a No vote is that a Yes is going to lead to an unsustainable…a very bad agreement for both Greece and Europe,” Varoufakis said.

He said behind-the-scene negotiations were continuing despite public pronouncements from European leaders that no negotiations would take place until after Sunday’s vote.

Varoufakis denied the vote would determine whether Greece remained in the eurozone, insisting the country would stay in the single currency and that deposits in Greek banks were safe.

“The creditors have chosen this path of playing hardball, of blackmailing our government with bank closures but that’s going to end after the referendum, when we deliver a verdict one way or the other.”

Varoufakis admitted the IMF’s assessment was “music to his ears” as he and his government had been arguing all along that Greece’s debt was unsustainable.

Responding to Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s assertion that Greece should not be given debt relief, he said the Irish people had been “saddled with a preposterous debt” and that they should join forces with the Greeks and possibly the Portuguese to request “a very sensible” debt relief exercise.

Irish Times

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