German lawmakers approved a hard-won bailout extension for Greece's new anti-austerity government in a move Berlin's finance chief called "not easy" but necessary, keeping a crucial lifeline open to Athens. Greece's left-wing Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras welcomed the German vote Friday as "a political act of common sense and democracy", saying there would be no third bailout for his country and pledging to get to work on reforms. He promised that now his month-old government would "start working hard, in order to change Greece within a Europe that changes direction". The four-month bailout extension for Greece, approved by eurozone finance ministers Tuesday, averts a potentially calamitous end-February deadline that could have seen Athens default and exit from the euro.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's right-wing government will unveil its first full budget on Saturday, a day after announcing the time was ripe for long-awaited reforms to kickstart the economy. Modi swept to power last year on a pledge to revive India's flagging economic fortunes and provide jobs for its rapidly growing population of over 1.2 billion. On Friday, his government forecast India's growth would exceed eight percent in the next financial year, leaping from around five percent for the past two years and overtaking China to become the world's fastest-growing major economy. This "gives an opportunity to the increasingly young, middle-class and aspirational India to realise its full potential," the government said in a statement on the India Economic Survey, an annual report prepared by the finance ministry.