PM Tsipras Appoints Euclid Tsakalotos as Greece’s New Finance Minister
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has appointed Euclid Tsakalotos as Greece’s new finance minister following the resignation of Yanis Varoufakis, according to Greek media reports on Monday.
Tsakalotos, alternate minister for international economic relations, took over from Varoufakis as lead negotiator in Greece's bail-out talks with international creditors in April after lenders and several Eurozone finance ministers had expressed their displeasure with Varoufakis’ negotiation style.
“Though his [Tsakalotos'] politics seem, at least from the perspective of the Eurogroup, largely similar to his predecessor, the Eurogroup may find him easier to deal with — it was Varoufakis' personal style that many found jarring,” the Business Insider commented.
From his first day in his new position, Tsakalotos will have to deal with an economy in crisis when he meets Greece's creditors in Brussels on Tuesday.
Born in Rotterdam and educated in Oxford, Tsakalotos, 55, taught economics at Kent University in Britain between 1990 and 1993 before relocating to Athens. He has been member of the Greek Parliament since 2012.
A member of the radical left Syriza party for almost a decade, Tsakalotos is seen as a safer pair of hands for Greece to resume negotiations with its lenders. euronews.com commented in its coverage of the news.
The government in Athens broke off negotiations on a rescue plan proposed by creditors just days before Greece was due to repay EUR 1.5 B to the IMF on Tuesday. With state coffers empty, Greece defaulted on its IMF debt, and was forced to impose capital controls and close banks as of 29 June to halt an outflow cash as anxious Greeks rushed to withdraw money.
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