Troika to arrive in Cyprus for bailout talks

Officials from Cyprus?s potential rescue creditors are on their way to the island nation to begin talks on the terms of a bailout, the country?s Finance Ministry said on Monday.

The ministry said in a statement that a large delegation from the so-called troika — the body made up of the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund — will on Tuesday start three days of discussions with the Cypriot government and banking authorities, as well as political parties and trade unions.

It said the delegation will look into the country?s banks, which are exposed to debt-stricken Greece, as well as the government?s fiscal needs and long-term economic outlook. The ministry said that Cypriot authorities will work closely with troika officials to assess the banking system?s capital needs.

Ministry Finance Director Andreas Trokkos said this will be the first in a series of similar contacts and that a deal between the government and the 30-strong troika team on the bailout?s terms may be ready to be signed by the end of the month. [AP]

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