Sunday, January 23, 2011

Don't rule out debt buy-back idea

January 22, 2011

European leaders should not shy away from a proposal to buy back the bonds of troubled euro member states but should not rely too much on rich countries, Eurogroup Chief Jean-Claude Juncker said.

"It would be wrong to create taboos but we cannot overstretch the strong countries," Juncker said in an interview with German magazine Der Spiegel seen by Reuters on Saturday ahead of publication.

A source told Reuters on Thursday that euro zone ministers are considering whether the bloc's rescue fund could buy back bonds of debt-ridden states, a plan Portugal said it supported.

Der Spiegel magazine also reported in an unsourced reported that the idea of a buy-back, which it said was first raised by the European rescue fund's chief Klaus Regling, had been greeted with sympathy by euro zone finance ministers this week.

Without citing any sources, Der Spiegel said Regling's suggestion stood good chances of becoming reality.


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