Eurozone finance ministers have finally agreed to allow Greece an additional two years to meet its budgetary targets, although they have left undecided for now the matter of where additional funding will come from to tide the Mediterranean nation over during the extra period of time.
Bloomberg reported Tuesday that in the wake of Greece’s adoption of a stringent austerity budget for 2013, which spurred street demonstrations, the country’s creditors decided that it would be better to give Athens more time to cut its debt than to risk a default that could put everything in jeopardy.
Not everyone was happy with the decision, however. International Monetary Fund Director Christine Lagarde protested the extension of the deadline for Greece to cut its debt to a “sustainable” level to 2022, saying that the target date “has to be 2020.”
Lagarde and Eurogroup chairman Jean-Claude Juncker argued over the question of whether governments within the eurozone must write off some of their Greek debt so that the country can cut its obligations to a manageable level–a measure that Germany has unequivocally characterized as illegal.