The International Monetary Fund said it has approved 28 billion euros ($36.56 billion) in funding for crisis-hit Greece over the next four years.
An IMF statement said the executive board’s decision Thursday allows for immediate release of 1.65 billion euros ($2.15 billion) of these funds as part of the country’s second bailout.
Greece will receive a total 172.7 billion euros ($226 billion) in rescue loans from its euro zone partners and the IMF to keep it afloat in the next few years, as dizzily high borrowing rates have blocked its ability to raise money on the international bond markets.
The country has survived since May 2010 on a first rescue loan package worth a total 110 billion euros ($143.63 billion). In return for both bailouts, Athens has imposed stringent cost-cutting measures, slashing pensions and salaries while repeatedly increasing taxes.