ECONOMY

In Brief

Wind Hellas to pay interest on senior debt Wind Hellas Telecommunications SA, the third-largest Greek wireless operator, said it plans to pay interest on senior debt and use a grace period to defer coupons on subordinated bonds. Lenders agreed to waive and amend some of the terms and conditions of its debt in return for a consent fee, Hellas Telecommunications II, the holding company for Athens-based Wind Hellas, said in a statement. A cash investment of at least 50 million euros ($75 million), as well as restructuring costs and interest payments to subordinated noteholders, is among new terms being demanded by lenders. The company, which is seeking to restructure as much as 3 billion euros of debt, has received expressions of interest for its assets and expects «final and binding offers» by October 22, according to the statement. Hellas II’s assets are shares in the operating company and its Hellas IV unit, and intercompany debt, while the sale is expected to be completed by November 15, it said. (Bloomberg) Bulgarian c/a deficit halved due to crisis SOFIA (Reuters) – Bulgaria’s current account deficit more than halved to 6.6 percent of annual gross domestic product in the first eight months of the year from 14.8 percent a year ago due to the recession and falling domestic demand, data showed yesterday. The deficit, which has made the European Union member very dependent on foreign cash flows and vulnerable to external risk, fell to 2.2 billion euros ($3.28 billion) in January-August, down 56.4 percent from a year earlier, central bank data showed. Exports plunged from January through August by 29.9 percent to 7.42 billion euros, while imports fell by 34.9 percent to 10.52 billion euros. Shipping costs International climate protection talks this year may create new emissions caps on airlines and shipping companies, boosting their costs, said an analyst at Citigroup Inc. «A global sector agreement would impose a new liability on the industries which should penalize the carriers with the least efficient aircraft/ships and those with weak pricing power,» Meg Brown, a Citigroup analyst in London, said. (Bloomberg) State payback Credit Agricole said it would repay 3 billion euros ($4.5 billion) in state support this month, becoming the last French bank to detail when it will reimburse government aid given during the financial crisis. The bank will redeem loans given in December by the SPPE, the body set up to boost the capital of banks under strain, on October 27, it said in a statement yesterday. «This decision is explained primarily by the confirmed financial strength of Credit Agricole Group and, within the group, of Credit Agricole SA,» the bank said. (Reuters) Carbon emissions Bulgaria’s new government will launch long-delayed trade in European Union carbon emissions permits early next year after the EU Commission approves its revised 2008-12 carbon plan, Environment Minister Nona Karadzhova said. Industry groups and emissions traders have criticized the previous Socialist-led government for being too slow in allocating the permits, called EU Allowances (EUAs), for a lack of transparency and repeatedly failing to meet the Commission’s requirements. (Reuters)