European bailout head hopeful on Greek debt relief this year

The head of the eurozone's bailout fund says his institution will come up with initial proposals to ease Greece's massive debt burden before the end of the year.

Klaus Regling says the European Stability Mechanism, or ESM, is working on short-term debt relief measures aimed at reducing the Greek economy's vulnerability to interest rate payments.

He said after talks with Cypriot president Nicos Anastasiades Tuesday that further measures will come if Greece sticks to the commitments it made in its third bailout with European creditors last year.

Greece is pressing creditors to start talks on debt relief measures — with longer maturities and a more even repayment schedule — but has faced opposition from main creditor Germany.

Greece's debt burden stands at around 180 percent of the country's GDP.