Dijsselbloem: Delay the Eurogroup chairman election

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No image availableNL Times

With reporting by Zack Newmark.

The election of the Eurogroup chairman should be delayed by a month, the current chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem wrote on Twitter. Dijsselbloem, the Finance Minister for the Netherlands, believes focus should not be diverted away from negotiations with Greece over austerity measures and repayments of billions of euros in loans.

The current agreement with Greece expires on June 30.

Originally, the election was on the agenda of the Eurogroup meeting in Luxembourg on Thursday. Dijsselbloem proposed to postpone the issue until the next meeting of the finance ministers in July. Dijssebloem's term expires at the end of that month, and he is seeking re-election to the position.

Spanish Minister of Economy and Competitiveness, Luis de Guindos, is the only person challenging Dijsselbloem for the role. If the ballot was held as scheduled, Dijsselbloem would beat De Guindos 11 votes to eight, German newspaper Der Spiegel reported.

Spain agrees with Dijsselbloem on the postponement. The country believes it is unreasonable to address the chairmanship while there is still no agreement on financial assistance to Greece.

Aside from Greece, the Eurogroup will also discuss developments in Portugal's economy, and the progress of reforms in Cyprus. The ministers will also learn the annual results of the International Monetary Fund review of the euro area.