GREEK Prime Minister George Papandreou has asked for the EU/IMF debt rescue mechanism for his country to be triggered.
It comes after data showed the debt-laden country has a budget deficit of 13.6 per cent of gross domestic product – higher than forecast.
The loans package has been put together to help dig the eurozone member out of trouble.
The 16 eurozone nations agreed to provide up to 30bn euros (£26bn) in emergency loans for debt-hit Greece in case of emergency.
Tax collection in Greece has been under the spotlight, with the IMF ordering the stricken country to collect more by tightening up lax procedures.
Papandreou said in a statement: "This is the moment. The time that was not granted to us by the markets will be given to us by the support of the euro zone.
"It is a national and imperative need to officially ask our partners in the EU for the activation of the support mechanism we jointly created."