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Greece Asks For More Time To Implement Cuts



Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is meeting with eurogroup leader Jean-Claude Juncker in Athens on Wednesday, after asking "more time for cuts" in an interview with German publication Bild.

Mr. Samaras rejected the possibility of an exit from the euro zone and a return to the drachma, saying it would result in a "catastrophe for Greece," according to Channel 4 News.

Mr. Samaras came to power last June, promising to seek a two-year extension to the deadline for implementing cuts in exchange for two 240 billion euro aid packages.

But the implementation of these unpopular austerity measures has dragged on and some European partners, especially Germany, have grown impatient as the debt crisis continues.

"If #Greece is going to leave... I don't believe it is going to have a great impact any more," German MP Dr Michael Fuchs #eurozone #grexit

— BBC Radio 4 Today (@BBCr4today) August 22, 2012

"Let me be very clear: we are not asking for extra money," Samaras told Bild. "We stand by our commitments and the implementation of all requirements. But we must encourage growth, because that reduces the financing gaps."

"All we want is a little "air to breathe" to get the economy going and increase state income," Samaras also said. "More time does not automatically mean more money."

Athens News reports that Samaras is also going to meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday and French President François Hollande on Saturday in an effort to get his message through.

Jean-Claude Juncker is the Prime Minister of Luxembourg and the president of the eurogroup, the meeting of the euro zone finance ministers.

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How A Xi Jinping Dinner In San Francisco May Have Sealed Mastercard's Arrival In China

The credit giant becomes only the second player after American Express to be allowed to set up a bank card-clearing RMB operation in mainland China.

Photo of a hand holding a phone displaying an Union Pay logo, with a Mastercard VISA logo in the background of the photo.

Mastercard has just been granted a bank card clearing license in China.

Liu Qianshan


It appears that one of the biggest beneficiaries from Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to San Francisco was Mastercard.

The U.S. credit card giant has since secured eagerly anticipated approval to expand in China's massive financial sector, having finally obtained long sought approval from China's central bank and financial regulatory authorities to initiate a bank card business in China through its joint venture with its new Chinese partner.

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Through a joint venture in China between Mastercard and China's NetsUnion Clearing Corporation, dubbed Mastercard NUCC, it has officially entered mainland China as an RMB currency clearing organization. It's only the second foreign business of its kind to do so following American Express in 2020.

The Wall Street Journal has reported that the development is linked to Chinese President Xi Jinping's meeting on Nov. 15 with U.S. President Joe Biden in San Francisco, part of a two-day visit that also included dinner that Xi had with U.S. business executives.

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