October 9, 2017 / 4:54 PM / a year ago

Euro zone finance ministers back backstop role for ESM bailout fund

LUXEMBOURG, Oct 9 (Reuters) - The chair of euro zone finance ministers said on Monday there was strong support among the bloc’s 19 states to give the euro zone bailout fund a backstop role for the European banking fund, a change that could strengthen financial stability.

Speaking after a meeting of euro zone finance ministers in Luxembourg, Jeroen Dijsselbloem also said ministers were willing to discuss new roles for the European Stability Mechanism to prevent crises. Several options remain open on how it could expand its current functions.

Ministers also agreed the ESM should remain outside EU treaties, Dijsselbloem said. This would avoid a change in its governance in the near future that could be rejected by EU voters. (Reporting by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio; editing by Foo Yun Chee)

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