Latvian Finance Minister continues Greek rhetoric

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The Latvian government and parliament may have given the country's official approval as a eurozone member state for a third Greek bailout package, but the move has only seen the level of invective directed against Athens from Riga ramped up.

In a hard-hitting press release Monday, Finance Minister Janis Reirs re-iterated that his government wouldn't hesitate to snap its wallet shut on the €86bn bailout if Greece doesn't keep its side of the bargain.

"Latvia's position on this issue is firm. Payments to Greece will not be provided if real reforms are not implemeted to stabilize the economic situation in the country and stimulate economic growth. 

"If there is real work - there will also be payments!" Reirs said, complete with exclamation mark.

The ministry even went as far as to tweet an image of Reirs along with the quote, suggesting it is his new slogan of choice.

The net result gives the distinct impression that Latvian confidence in the chances of the Greek bailout actually working is less than rock-solid.

The ministry also distributed a graphic in its efforts to show precisely how much Latvian money is involved in the complex negotiations over the Greek deal.

According to the graphic, Latvia's share of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) currently accounts for 0.2746% of the mechanism's total value.

The popular mood in Latvia about the Greek bailout is far from sympathetic with many people perplexed by a relatively poor country such as Latvia being asked to bail out a wealthier country such as Greece where wages, pensions and social security payments are all higher on average.  

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