WASHINGTON/BRUSSELS, Nov 29 (Reuters) – Italy has had
preliminary discussions with the International Monetary Fund
about financial support to cope with the euro zone’s debt
crisis, possibly co-funded by national European central banks,
but no decision has been taken, several sources close to the
New Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti was briefing euro
zone finance ministers on his fiscal plans on Tuesday but the
sources said no formal request for IMF assistance was expected
before he presents his budget to the cabinet on Dec. 5.
In Spain, the centre-right People’s Party (PP), which won a
Nov. 20 general election, is considering seeking international
aid as one option for shoring up Madrid’s public finances,
according to sources close to the party.
The PP and the outgoing Socialist government denied there
were any such talks.
The situation is complicated by the fact that centre-right
Prime Minister-elect Mariano Rajoy has not yet formed his
government and will only take office around Dec. 20, although he
is expected to outline key economic plans on Dec. 8.
A source familiar with both sides of exploratory talks
between Italy and the IMF said high level discussions had been
under way for weeks but had accelerated since last Wednesday,
when Germany made clear the European Central Bank could not
directly assist Rome.