ATHENS, Greece - Greece's euro partners won't be able to release the country's next batch of bailout cash next week, even though the Greek Parliament narrowly backed more unpopular austerity measures Thursday.
Germany's finance minister, Wolfgang Schaeuble, said the 17-country eurozone is not yet in a position to make a decision on releasing the funds, as many in Athens may have hoped. As anticipated, the cash-strapped country still has to pass its budget for 2013, while lawmakers in some countries, including Germany, have to authorize the release of funds.
"We're not there yet," Schaeuble said in Hamburg.
The approval of the austerity bill, which will further cut salaries and pensions and increase taxes, was the key step toward persuading Greece's international creditors to release the next 31.5 billion-euro ($40.2 billion) installment of the country's vital bailout loans.