Ireland, Portugal get seven-year bailout loan extension

DUBLIN Fri Apr 12, 2013 6:09pm BST

Ireland's Finance Minister Michael Noonan (L) greets Portugal's Finance Minister Vitor Gaspar during an informal meeting of European finance ministers in Dublin April 12, 2013. REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton

Ireland's Finance Minister Michael Noonan (L) greets Portugal's Finance Minister Vitor Gaspar during an informal meeting of European finance ministers in Dublin April 12, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Cathal McNaughton

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DUBLIN (Reuters) - European Union finance ministers agreed on Friday to extend the maturities of emergency loans extended to Ireland and Portugal by the European Union by seven years to smooth out the two countries' return to markets.

The 17 finance ministers whose countries share the euro currency had agreed to the extension earlier on Friday, but because some loans were also granted by a fund backed by all 27 European union countries, the other 10 ministers had to give their approval too.

The euro zone loans were granted by the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) as well as the EU-backed European Financial Stability Mechanism (EFSM).

"Extensions of loans from the EFSM for Ireland and Portugal have been approved," one EU diplomat said.

(Reporting By Ecofin team; editing by John O'Donnell)

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Comments (2)
pavlaki wrote:
Why don’t they just give them the money instead of one extension after the other? This is all about facing the reality that the original Eurozone forecasts are absolute rubbish. Both countries are supposed to be back in growth by now but are in fact far from it. If in seven years time the loans still can’t be repaid then no doubt there will be another extension. Why can’t these finance ministers face up to the truth?!

Apr 12, 2013 4:26pm BST  --  Report as abuse
Raymond.Vermont wrote:
Roll up, roll up, free money as the the EU cannot afford one EZ administartion to declare bankruptcy within its state banking sector for fear of collapsing the currency itself!

Merkel by the horns…

Apr 12, 2013 8:46pm BST  --  Report as abuse
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