On Tuesday night, Greece missed the deadline for a $1.8 billion debt payment to the International Monetary Fund, becoming the first developed country to do so and joining a club of delinquent borrowers that includes the nations of Sudan, Somalia and Zimbabwe, the Associated Press reports.
According to the IMF, this puts Greece “into arrears,” a state of overdue debt considered by many analysts to be equivalent to default. Credit ratings agencies, however, have previously stated they would not treat a missed payment by the country as default.
With the eurozone bailout expired, Greece no longer has access to billions of euros in funds and could not meet its IMF repayment.
Eurogroup chairman and Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem earlier said it would be “crazy” to extend the Greek bailout beyond its Tuesday midnight expiration as Athens was refusing to accept the European proposals on the table.
Speaking after the conference call with other eurozone ministers, he added that a Greek request for a new €29.1bn European aid programme would be considered later.
On Sunday, Greek voters will decide via referendum whether to accept the reforms proposed by the country’s creditors. According to The Guardian, European leaders have warned that a “no” vote would mean an end to Greece’s eurozone membership and a return to the drachma.
[Image via AP Images]