Greek debt swap talks suspended


Greece's government says that negotiations with private creditors aimed at lightening Greece's debt load have been suspended unexpectedly and that the creditors' representative has left Greece.

Prime Minister Lucas Papademos, along with Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos, had met private creditors' representative Charles Dallara, managing director of the Institute of International Finance, for more than four hours on Friday, with the talks continuing past midnight.

A spokesman for Papademos said today that no new date for the talks has been set.

At issue is the interest rate in an eventual bond swap, which could lighten Greece's debt burden by as much as 100 billion euros (£83 billion).

Dallara later said he is "constantly talking by phone" with Greek officials and that the talks are "coming together".

He left the Greek capital for a "long-standing engagement" in Paris, said his spokesman Frank Vogl.

Vogl said that IIF's legal and financial advisers are still in Athens working on several "outstanding issues" with Greek officials and that Dallara will return to Athens "as needed".