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Eurogroup chief: Cypriot economy to recover ‘in short period’

Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem said on Monday he was confident that Cyprus’s bailed-out economy will recover in a “short period of time” despite the harsh haircut slapped on savings.

The Dutch finance minister was visiting the eurozone member one year after a controversial bailout deal which saw an unprecedented haircut on deposits over 100,000 euros to secure emergency funding to save a bankrupt economy.

“The economy of Cyprus has shown [it is]... dynamic and flexible, therefore I’m optimistic Cyprus will recover in a short period of time,” said Dijsselbloem, who heads the eurozone’s finance ministers.

“The Cyprus government is fulfilling all its commitments so the trust will come back,” he added.

Tough austerity measures have also seen unemployment sky-rocket to record levels above 17 percent, while recession-hit Cypriots have endured tax hikes and pay cuts.

“We fully realize the effects the measures have had on the short-term economy and the lives of the people,” Dijsselbloem told reporters after meeting his Cypriot counterpart, Haris Georgiades.

“These are difficult times, difficult, yet inevitable measures... but there is a new perspective for the economy and people of Cyprus,” he added.

On the haircut, Dijsselbloem said: “I think that it was very harsh. I fully realize that, but it was also inevitable in view of the specific situation of the banking system in Cyprus.”

[AFP]

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