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The Greek government debt crisis is one of a number of current European sovereign debt crises . Beginning in late 2009, fears of a sovereign debt crisis developed among investors concerning Greece's ability to meet its debt obligations due to strong increase in government debt levels. This led to a crisis of confidence, indicated by a widening of bond yield spreads and the cost of risk insurance on credit default swaps compared to the other countries in the Eurozone , most importantly Germany. Downgrading of Greek government debt to junk bond status in April 2010, created alarm in financial markets. On 2 May 2010, the Eurozone countries and the IMF agreed on a €110 billion bailout loan for Greece, conditional on the implementation of harsh austerity measures. In October 2011, Eurozone leaders agreed to offer a second €130 billion bailout loan for Greece, conditional not only the implementation of another harsh austerity package, but also that all private creditors should agree to a restructure of the Greek debt, reducing the debt burden from a forecasted 198% of GDP in 2012 to only 120.5% of GDP by 2020. The second bailout deal was finally ratified by all parties in February 2012, and became activated one month later, after the last condition about a successful debt restructure of all Greek government bonds, also had been met. Money-wise the latest bailout plan is set to cover all Greek financial needs in the next three years from 2012-2014. If Greece can manage to comply with all economic targets outlined in the bailout plan, a full return to use the private capital markets for covering future financial needs, will be possible again in 2015. (wikipedia)

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Additional Photos by Vasilis Protopapas (vasilpro) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2752 W: 87 N: 5085] (40881)
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