Greek PM Tsipras Allegedly Asked Russia for $10 Bln to Print Drachmas

Tsipras meeting with Putin Kremlin

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has asked Russian President Vladimir Putin for 10 billion dollars in order to print drachmas, according to newspaper “To Vima.”

The newspaper report cited Tsipras saying in his last major interview to Greek national broadcaster ERT that “in order for a country to print its own national currency, it needs reserves in a strong currency.”

Moscow’s response was a vague mention of a 5-billion-dollar advance on the new South Stream natural gas pipeline construction that will pass through Greece. Tsipras also sent similar loan requests to China and Iran, but to no avail, the report said.

The idea of introduction of a new national currency was examined by technocrats and Greek Finance Ministry employees, who studied the model of Slovakia’s secession from Czechoslovakia in early 1993 and the introduction of the Slovak koruna, the report said.

Tsipras was planning the return to the drachma since early 2015 and was counting on Russia’s help to achieve this goal. According to the report, Panos Kammenos, Yiannis Dragasakis, Yanis Varoufakis, Nikos Pappas, Panagiotis Lafazanis and other key coalition members were aware of his plan.

In his first visit to Moscow, Tsipras condemned the European Union policy in Ukraine and supported the referendum of east Ukraine seeking secession. It was then that Germany realized Greece was prepared to shift alliances, something that would threaten the Eurozone cohesion. Tsipras was hoping that Germany would back down under that threat and offer Greece a generous debt haircut. At the time, Tsipras had the rookie ambition that he could change Europe, the report continued.

It also spoke of a “geopolitical matchmaking” as Tsipras was introduced to Leonid Resetnikof, Director of the Russian Institute of Strategic Studies, before the European Parliament elections in May 2014. The introduction was made by Professor of Russian Studies Nikos Kotzias, who later cashed in on his services by getting the chair of Foreign Affairs Minister.

The July 5 referendum was a test for Tsipras to see what the Greek people were thinking about Europe and the Eurozone. However, on the night of the referendum, word came from Russia that Putin did not want to support Greece’s return to the drachma. That was confirmed the days that followed. After that, Tsipras had no choice left but to “surrender” to German Chancellor Angela Merkel and sign the third bailout package.

The report created a stir and led 17 New Democracy MPs to send a letter to Tsipras, asking if any of the allegations are true.

  • dachu3

    Greece, save yourself and go with the Iceland model.
    Get out of Euro and EU, protect your sovereignty and your own people

  • Marcus77

    I wish one of those countries would have given Greece the $10 billion, would be better than this

  • MSMlies

    ACTIONS speak louder than words!

    “We are not against every sanction, WE ARE IN THE MAINSTREAM, we are not the bad boys.” said Greek foreign minister Nikos Kotzias, with reference to EU sanctions on Russia.

    When it came to the crunch Alexis Tsipras chose to support all existing EU sanctions Russia, so how can any sane person expect Russian President Putin to give concrete meaningful support to Tsipras when Tsipras refused to veto EU sanctions on Russia.

    A genuine forging of meaningful economic-military relations between Greece and Russia will only occur if the Greek people elect a Golden Dawn government, any talk of a Greek-Russian alliance under a SYRIZA-ANEL coalition government is pure nonsense.

  • Madison Wallace

    Greece should leave I want nothing from them as an American any longer.
    They r not the greecs of old, they are traitors,
    Where had the wealth of so many kings gone?
    Its Greece’s fault.

  • inisfree

    No smoke without fire. Tsipras is a schemer and a liar. Lagarde spoke about the lack of adults in the room. Syriza would never have been elected if they’d had a return to the drachma on their manifesto. So, the drachma proposal was kept secret while Tsipras and Varoufakis behaved like kids in an effort to be kicked out of the euro while Germany got the blame. It nearly worked. On seeing crying pensioners queuing at ATMs for hours in the heat, Tsipras finally understood what Grexit meant on the ground. He lost his nerve and ditched Varoufakis. Lafazanis et al may be lunatics, but they are honest lunatics. Most people have understood since 2010 the chaos that Grexit would cause. Tsipras had to see capital controls, social distress, €30 billion lost, and 50,000 job losses in the first week of capital controls before coming to his senses (or losing his nerve). If the Greek people re-elect him in September, they will deserve all they get.

  • Aggressor Viper Driver

    No surprise. Tsipras is a liar, just like Putin.

  • Tsigantes

    If Ta Nea continues to give no proof of this “report”, its provenance etc, through publication than it is cIearIy partisan rumor mongering.

  • James Dunham

    None of those Countries has 10 Billion to give..

    Russia is trying to protect its own Crashing Currency

    Chinas economy is very weak right now and its Markets are close to crashing

    And Iran???? Good luck with that.. Imagine American Warships Patrolling your waters in the Med to protect their Economic Interests…

    And you think Iran is scuttling any potential Deal with the US in these latest Negotiations for Greece????

    If this is true about asking for Money it just shows the Depths of the Greek Incompetence.

    I did not even mention that even if those Countries did have the money available to give.. and the will to give if merited..

    Greece does not merit Money.. Why would ANYONE give money to someone or something that has PROVEN not only Unable to pay.. But Unwilling as well?

    People especially the Greeks need to come back to reality.

    If this is true one thing should occur… Greece should be frozen out of NATO because if true then Greece can not be trusted with either NATO Gear OR NATO Strategies. Seeing as they are comfy with NATO’s Possible Enemies.

    Greece was totally Incompetent in pretty much every Policy that led them to where they are today.. and Apparently Continue this trend of Incompetence.

  • Rasmaroon

    I have some doubts about this report. The German Finance Minister, Schauble offered Greece 50 billion Euros to leave the Euro Zone as part of his GREXIT Plan. If Tsipras was ready to go for the Drachma AFTER LENDING 10 billion dollars why didn’t he do it for more than 5 times that amount.

  • James Dunham

    A Greek Russian Alliance gets American Warships off your Coast… and Sanctions from the worlds most powerful economies… US and EU.. Because Russia is being Sanctioned quite seriously.

    A Greek Iran Alliance gets American Warships off the Coast.. and sanctions from the worlds most Powerful economies .. US and EU..Because Iran is being Sanctioned quite seriously.

    A Chinese Alliance…. I will just stop there.. it is LAUGHABLE that the Chinese would give any money to Deadbeats for any reason… They are to busy trying to get America to go along with their South China Sea Program anyway.. Much to busy to go rocking any boats for no Political Gain. What does Greece have to offer China if it is not a Part of the EU or worse Confronting the EU? The Answer is NOTHING.

    Tsipras should have been more aware of the Geo-Political Realities of such a Plan.

    Incompetence. After such a Move who will buy Greek stuff? The Broke Russians? The Broke Iranians? Or the Chinese that Prefer to sell over buy? Because what do you think the 2 Largest Economies in the World in regards to Buying stuff are going to do when you betray them for the Opposition? You think they will welcome you into their Markets with Open Arms? Delusional…

  • James Dunham

    1) Iceland Workers now work 60-70 Hours a Week

    2) Their taxes are now Nearly DOUBLE what they were

    Greece has been Unwilling to follow the Iceland Model.

    Of Letting the National Banks Crash… Throwing the National Bankers in Jail…

    Then Raising Taxes and Lengthening Work Hours to Pay back the Debts that can not be Forgiven and must be paid back… To shore up what Banks are left.

    The only thing Iceland let be forgiven was ALL the Mortgages in the Nation.. they then reset to Zero…

    But to make this work.. the Citizens had to Pay HUGE TAXES .. and Work close to 70 Hours a week.

    Given the Low Retirement Ages in Greece.. the Low Tax Burden… And the Short Workweek… Is a Icelandic Solution even Possible in Greece?

    Are Greek Citizens prepared to Work 3 Times as Long and deep into their 60’s?

    Are Greek Citizens prepared to Pay nearly 100% more in Taxes?

    Because that is the Icelandic Model. That was their self imposed ‘Austerity’.

  • roger_erickson

    anyone else think you need reserves in a strong fiat currency, in order to print IOUs?

    someone in Greece PLEASE talk to Tsipras;
    he obviously understands little or nothing about fiat currency operations; or banking

  • Abraham Seggfej

    Interesting……from what source did you get this information, Sir? Moreover, are you aware that the debt problem in Greece was not caused by the people but, by the Banksters?
    Do you really think that the ” do nothing’ way will work in Greece?
    It is now a certainty that even if half of the nearly €300 billion debt was wiped away by the ECB, this will not save the Greek economy due to the damage already done.
    I predict that Greeks will be emptying their Bank accounts as fast as they can( €60 per day), as they know that a bail-in is coming just like in Cyprus.
    It is a shame that the tsipras gov’t did not do what Ecuador & Iceland did because, anything would be better than the fate that now awaits Greece , Italy& Espania .

  • Guest no 1

    The Greeks have already done all that, and got nowhere. At least Iceland has its pride and self-respect, which has been denied Greece.

  • Guest no 1

    WTF? what wealth of kings? Greece has been a bankrupt country since its foundation, in 1832.

  • Guest no 1

    I think so. The problem is not IOUs, it’s how to trade.

  • JonniOZ

    Another Anglo with no idea making generalisations……….
    The OECD report says that the Greeks work the longest hours in the EU.
    & for far less pay and worse conditions than in Iceland thanks.

  • JonniOZ

    I suppose you would think that after, reading the Telegraph, Economist etc.
    If the country defaults its economy would begin to recover quite smartly, and would therefore be able to support a small amount of debt.

  • Boydist

    With debt 100% of GDP and growing ($18 trillion), $800 billion spent on the military every year and trillions more in unfunded liabilities, the US is not far behind. As is just about every Western nation.

  • Handyman1

    I disagree that the crisis in Greece wasn’t caused by the people. Of course it was. Before the crisis the Greec people en mass allowed a situation of living well above its standards with 14 to 15 month wages and bus drivers earning 70k per year, very early retirement ages (still !) and a burocracy much too big (still !). They en mass built swimming pools and ended up with a budget deficit of 15%. As long as it alll went right, they continued supporting governments who gave them this life. Nobody seemed to think about tomorrow.

    I get sick and tired of the typical Balcan attitude to blame everybody but never to see the own responsibility. Spain, Portugal, Ireland became the owner of their own ploblems and solved them. They see no more IMF on their doorsteps. Because of the weak attitude of many Greec people and most of their leaders they are still in a mess and close to a total collaps of their country with hunger, chaos and violence as a consequence.

    I agree with you though that it would be better for Greece to leave the Eurozone. Maybe the return to the Drachme helps them although it could also accelerate the collaps. But I hope it most for the rest of Europa. With Greece leaving the Eurozone we will end the Eurocrisis and the Eurozone will gain credibility: States who are to weak, will in the end (after being helped like Greece but failed) have to leave the Eurozone. If I were an investor, this would give me more confidence than a Eurozone trying to keep everybody in against any price !

    By the way, a Greec populist left wing government seeking support from corrupt criminal Mr. Putin shows what kind a people they are. In the elections they never said to their people that they would do this bu still it was one of the first things Tsipras did. He knows that the economic doctrine he told the people won’t work. He has nothing to offer economically within his doctrine so he needs support from abroad and a dictator is apparently exactly right. This will happen everywhere in Europe were irresponsible populists take over. It is no wonder that they already support Putin and that some of them receive financial aid from Russia to continue their destructive work where the whole of Europe, if they succeed, will pay a tremendous price for !

  • James Dunham

    You are assuming that the Worlds Markets would still want to do Business with Tiny Insignificant Greece after Greece Stiffs them for Billions of Dollars.

    Come back to Reality.

  • Guest no 1

    Stop repeating Troika propaganda. You know nothing about Greece, it would appear — and nothing about Spain, Portugal and Ireland.

  • JonniOZ

    Argentina, Turkey 2001, Iceland 2008…….They all seem to borrow just fine thanks.
    Also they have to borrow from western countries. I’m sure deals can be made elsewhere. Also the country could borrow from it’s own private sector.
    So the Reality is there’s more than one way to skin a cat.

  • Handyman1

    Not impressed !

    One thing is sure to me, you certainly don’t know anything about me !

  • sergio

    Easy to say for you unless you make a living in Greece

  • sergio

    That is why they do not need help

  • sergio

    He asked Venezuela too ?

  • sergio

    Maybe Greece is bankrupt not the people the way they live and work

  • sergio

    The calculations are way different the US ( washington ) has the deficit no the people or the nation just aple has 1 trilion then add the rest of co. etc.

  • sergio

    I agree if they told the people vote for me and i will not pay the deficit make sure you get what you allready got and give to you more not less that is why they won election p.s. The leaders they had all offered more all the time to be elected

  • sergio

    If any one helps me to pay my bills and says jumb i ask how hi

  • JonniOZ

    You might even consider your wife……….

  • Guest no 1

    Not sure what you think your point is. There are certainly millions of bankrupted Greeks now, after the appalling treatment meted out by the Nazis.

  • JonniOZ

    That makes sense…………………

  • sergio

    She makes me jumb no matter what

  • Boydist

    The ownership of debt country to country is exactly the same. Rightly or wrongly, governments are the people, they represent the people and spend money on behalf of the people. For example the money printed to bail out the banks in the US is a debt that considerable tax dollars is currently going to pay. If what you are saying was correct, then why would the US government use tax payers money to pay down debt?

  • sergio

    Nations that let people to do work and make money over the nation pay taxes to support the nation other nations where the nation has control like , china , Venezuela ,Russia etc.. there is no need for big taxes .
    Remember 10 to 15 years ago how Mexico payed the debt all the nations that helped got upset and Greece to do the same they have to come out of the euro and if u.s. does the same as Mexico.Chine will go broke and the dollar will be worth 50/100 less