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Decision delayed on euro zone rescue fund increase

Decision delayed on euro zone rescue fund increase
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European finance ministers are not exactly rushing to beef up the euro zone’s rescue fund. With Germany opposed to the idea, the ministers, at their regular meeting in Brussels, agreed to take their time.

That was even though investors remain worried about the euro zone debt crisis.

Germany’s Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said with the markets calmer about lending money to the region’s governments there was no need to rush to boost the European Financial Stability Facility.

He told reporters: “What we are discussing now is the need for a comprehensive package, which would take away the necessity of having to react anew every couple of months. What we want to do – and everybody agrees – is to put forward a whole package.”

The idea is the reforms would be adopted by EU leaders in late March.

Meanwhile Greece, one of the countries under pressure, has moved quickly to counter fears that it might delay repaying its entire outstanding debt after its Deputy Prime Minister Theodore Pangalos hinted at that during a TV interview.

“Debt repayment extension may refer not only to the 110 billion euros (of emergency EU/IMF funding) but the entire debt,” he said.

But hours later a finance ministry official confirmed Athens was not discussing stretching out all debt repayments.

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