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US Treasury official to visit Athens and Rome this week

WASHINGTON--A senior U.S. Treasury official will travel to the capitals of Greece and Italy this week to discuss efforts to achieve economic stability and growth in Europe, the Treasury announced Monday.

Charles Collyns, the Treasury's assistant secretary for international finance and a former IMF economist, will be in Athens and Rome from Tuesday through Thursday, the department said in a statement.

No other details of his visit were announced.

Collyns's appearance in Europe comes against a backdrop of renewed fears that debt-riddled Greece may exit the eurozone and growing concerns that Spain and Italy may be the next to seek an international bailout.

His visit, billed as “part of Treasury's ongoing bilateral engagement,” will begin as Greece's global lenders — the International Monetary Fund, the European Union and the European Central Bank — are set to launch a new audit Tuesday of Greece's progress under its 130-billion-euro (US$157.5 billion) bailout.

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