BUSINESS

Cyprus would consider writing off Greek debt if there is a deal

Cyprus's finance minister says his own bailed-out country could consider writing off 330 million euros ($370 million) in rescue loans to Greece if there is a deal with other euro area member nations to lighten the country's debt load.

Harris Georgiades said Sunday the amount is significant relative to the small economy of Cyprus, whose banks took a 4.5 billion euro loss after the 2012 decision to write down Greeces government bonds.

But he said Cyprus would be "willing to accept any mutually agreed arrangement that would further decrease Greece's debt."

Georgiades said Cyprus supported extending Greece's rescue program because it would be "catastrophic" for a country to stay locked out of international markets without having such a program in place.

He said any Greek rescue program should be reform-oriented instead of raising taxes.

[AP]

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