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Euro group releases first bailout installment to Cyprus

The euro group has signed off the first installment of the USD 13 billion financial bailout package for debt-stricken Cyprus while allocating fresh disbursements for Greece and Portugal.
 
At the start of a two-day meeting in Brussels Monday, the finance ministers of the 17 EU nations using the single currency released USD 2.6 billion (2 billion euros) for Cyprus from the rescue package agreed in March and offered to provide another USD 1.3 billion (1 billion euros) before the end of June.
 
‘The euro group was satisfied that Cyprus has implemented all prior actions as agreed in the memorandum of understanding with its international creditors,’ president of the group Jeroen Dijsselbloem said at the conclusion of the meeting.
 
However, there were shortcomings in the Cyprus government’s compliance with the measures agreed to combat money laundering, he said.

The island nation’s implementation of measures to counter money laundering will be monitored closely, Dijselbloem said.
 
The euro zone finance ministers also want Cyprus to ‘proceed with the implementation of the agreed adjustment programme in a steadfast manner,’ he said.
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