EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Correspondent
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Apr 12, 2013

Austria stands alone as EU momentum builds against bank secrecy

DUBLIN, April 12 (Reuters) – Austria dismissed calls on
Friday to follow Luxembourg in ending bank secrecy but pressure
grew as a group of Europe’s biggest countries prepared to
outline plans to tackle tax evasion.

It is said to deprives EU governments of 1 trillion euros
annually.

In blunt remarks on the sidelines of a meeting of European
ministers, Austria’s finance minister described any exchange of
information about account holders as an invasion of privacy and
criticised other countries for failing to tackle what she called
the real “hot spots” of money laundering.

Apr 12, 2013

Euro ministers back 10 billion euro Cyprus bailout

DUBLIN (Reuters) – Euro zone finance ministers backed a 10 billion euro (8.5 billion pounds) bailout for Cyprus on Friday and the European Commission said it would try to help the island’s economy grow again with better use of EU structural funds.

The ministerial support opens the way for several euro zone countries, including Germany and Finland to seek approval for the three-year bailout in national parliaments, so that loan agreement with Nicosia can be signed by April 24.

Apr 12, 2013

Euro ministers back 10 bln euro Cyprus bailout, Nicosia mulls use of EU structural funds

DUBLIN, April 12 (Reuters) – Euro zone finance ministers
backed a 10 billion euro bailout for Cyprus on Friday and the
European Commission said it would try to help the island’s
economy grow again with better use of EU structural funds.

The ministerial support opens the way for several euro zone
countries, including Germany and Finland to seek approval for
the three-year bailout in national parliaments, so that loan
agreement with Nicosia can be signed by April 24.

Apr 12, 2013

Austria defies EU pressure to lift bank secrecy

DUBLIN, April 12 (Reuters) – Austria vowed on Friday to
stick to its bank secrecy laws, defying renewed pressure to
follow Luxembourg in revealing information on European Union
depositors with governments to clamp down on tax evasion.

The issue of tax havens and bank secrecy was a last-minute
addition to the agenda of informal talks of European Union
finance ministers in Dublin. Cyprus’s bailout and extending loan
repayments for Portugal and Ireland are also under discussion.

Apr 12, 2013

EU meeting to pile pressure on Austrian bank secrecy

DUBLIN, April 12 (Reuters) – Austria will come under renewed
pressure to prise open its bank secrecy rules at a two-day
meeting of European Union finance ministers, starting on Friday,
that will also seek to contain the fallout of a messy bailout of
Cyprus.

The gathering in Dublin follows Luxembourg’s decision this
week to share foreign bank account details with the holders’
home EU governments from 2015, bringing it into line with all
other countries in the bloc bar one – Austria.

Apr 11, 2013

EU ministers to tackle Cyprus fallout, banking union at Dublin talks

DUBLIN, April 11 (Reuters) – Fallout from the messy bailout
of Cyprus will top the agenda of a two-day EU finance ministers
meeting in Dublin beginning on Friday, with focus also on
growing German reluctance over euro zone banking reform.

Unease surrounding the rescue package for Cyprus grew on
Wednesday after Reuters and other news organisations obtained
documents detailing how the bailout will be financed and how
much of the total Cyprus is now expected to contribute.

Apr 10, 2013

EU raises flag over French, Italian, Spanish economies

BRUSSELS, April 10 (Reuters) – The European Commission
warned of deepening economic problems in France, Italy and Spain
on Wednesday, and said Slovenia must take urgent steps to offset
the risk of a wider destabilisation across the euro zone.

Unveiling its second review of economic imbalances in 13
European Union countries, the Commission flagged concerns about
France and Italy, while including Spain and Slovenia among
countries that could face fines if they do not correct course.

Apr 10, 2013

Spanish, Slovenian economies at risk from imbalances – EU

BRUSSELS, April 10 (Reuters) – Spain and Slovenia have
banking and labour-market problems that are causing imbalances
in their economies, the European Commission warned on Wednesday
after an in-depth review of 13 European Union countries designed
to stop trouble in individual states becoming a wider problem.

The early warning system, called the macroeconomic
imbalances procedure, was set up after problems in Greece,
Ireland and Portugal triggered the euro zone sovereign debt
crisis, forcing euro zone countries to bail them out.

Apr 3, 2013

Analysis: Bailout sends Cyprus on uncertain quest for new growth model

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Cyprus’s bank restructuring, a condition for international aid it needed to stave off bankruptcy, will force the Mediterranean island to scramble for new ways to generate wealth.

If it fails, international lenders may have to do what they wanted to avoid and which Germany and its northern European allies may baulk at – give Cyprus more money.

Apr 3, 2013

Bailout sends Cyprus on uncertain quest for new growth model

BRUSSELS, April 3 (Reuters) – Cyprus’s bank restructuring, a
condition for international aid it needed to stave off
bankruptcy, will force the Mediterranean island to scramble for
new ways to generate wealth.

If it fails, international lenders may have to do what they
wanted to avoid and which Germany and its northern European
allies may baulk at – give Cyprus more money.

    • About Jan

      "Based in Brussels since 2005, I cover economic policy news from the European Commission, EU and euro zone economic data, monthly meetings of EU/euro zone finance ministers as well as G7/8/20 meetings. Before Brussels I was a correspondent in Stockholm for five years, covering technology stocks and the Swedish central bank. I was earlier a correspondent in Poland for seven years, covering macroeconomic policy, bond, forex and money markets, the central bank and politics."
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