Cyprus banking reforms praised by EU ministers

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Cyprus banking reforms praised by EU ministers

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Efforts by cash-strapped Cyprus to restructure its banking systems have been praised at a meeting of Eurozone finance ministers in Brussels. The island has now received the first part of a rescue loan.

Debt-ridden Greece was told it needs to speed up its reforms.

“Greece needs to fully implement the agreed measures to improve tax collection in order to ensure a fairer distribution of the adjustment,” said Jeroen Dijsselbloem, Eurogroup President.

“Secondly, the necessary measures should be implemented to the liberalisation of closed professions and to enhance competition in products and service markets.”

Meanwhile on Monday, Spain and Portugal called for for the eurozone to complete a banking union. Many believe it is needed to restore investor confidence.

“We have made significant progress on the work to design the rules for direct banking recapitalisation by the European Stability Mechanism. We now need to work intensively to conclude an agreement by next month,” said Olli Rehn, EU Commissioner for Economic Affairs.

Many believe a banking union is needed to restore investor confidence.

Euronews reporter Isabel Marques da Silva, in Brussels, said: “The discussions on banking union and macroeconomic imbalances of 13 countries will resume at a meeting of the Economic and Financial Affairs Council.

“But that meeting will be dominated by measures against fraud and tax evasion, which should be approved at the next EU summit later this month.”