July 20 - Warnings of global repercussions if financial officials don't make strong decisions at Thursday's emergency summit on the Greek debt crisis. Kirsty Basset reports.
Anticipation is growing ahead of an emergency summit on the Greek debt crisis, with high hopes that financial officials will reach a decision on a new bailout. There's a lot at stake. European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has warned of global repercussions if the euro zone doesn't make some tough decisions. (SOUNDBITE) (English) EUROPEAN COMMISSION PRESIDENT JOSE MANUEL BARROSO SAYING: "Nobody should be under any illusion: The situation is very serious. It requires a response. Otherwise the negative consequences will be felt in all the corners of Europe and beyond. The situation requires full engagement by everyone at the summit, and I believe we will have it." As protesters clashed violently on the streets of Athens over more austerity measures, Barosso said the key ingredients for any rescue package should include measures to sustain Greek public finances, feasible private sector involvement and more flexible use of the euro zone's bailout fund. Banks are believed to be on track to offer euro zone officials a complex rescue proposal, but it may not prove to be the quick fix many are hoping for. The summit comes as fears grow the crisis could spread to other countries in the euro zone's periphery, in spite of efforts to curtail the impact. ING senior economist Carsten Brzeski. (SOUNDBITE) (English) ING SENIOR ECONOMIST, CARSTEN BRZESKI SAYING: "Now I think politicians have realised that it doesn't work. They sort of, all strategies applied did not really avoid contagion. If you look at Italy, look at spreads in Spain, so the spreads are going up. Calm has not been restored on financial markets." German Chancellor Angela Merkel meets with French President Nicolas Sarkozy in Berlin for talks ahead of the summit. Her spokesman said he's confident a solution will be found. The euro climbed around 0.6 percent against the dollar on that hope. Kirsty Basset, Reuters