Ireland eyes $13.2bn credit
Dublin, September 7, 2013
Ireland will seek a 10 billion euro ($13.2 billion) precautionary credit line to insulate it against possible market shocks when its bailout expires at the end of this year, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said.
For the first time putting a figure on the post-rescue backstop that Dublin has widely been expected to seek, Noonan told the Irish Independent he was hopeful a deal could be struck with no new conditions attached.
If the rest of its 85 billion euro international bailout programme goes according to plan, Ireland will in a few months become the first euro zone country to exit an aid scheme.
That would provide a much-needed success story for the troika of lenders - the European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund - which has tied aid to Ireland and four other euro zone states to tough austerity programmes.
Dublin's euro zone partners would have to sign off on any precautionary credit, which Noonan said would only be drawn on if needed and would act as reassurance for markets that its position was solid.
Ireland's borrowing costs have fallen steadily since peaking in 2011 and it returned to longer-term financial markets by raising 5 billion euros in a 10-year bond sale in March, suggesting it is almost ready to wean itself off emergency aid.-Reuters