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No bridging loan for Portugal: EU’s Barroso

Published on 13/04/2011

Portugal will not be granted a bridging loan by the European Union, EU Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso said Wednesday as negotiations on tackling the nation's debt crisis unfold in Lisbon.

“In conformity with existing rules… it is not possible to provide bridging loans,” the former Portuguese prime minister told a press conference in Brussels, underlining that Lisbon signed up to the presently agreed scope of European rescue funding.

The European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund are currently examining detailed emergency financing plans to help Portugal fight off a debt crisis that has already seen Greece and Ireland require nearly 200 billion euros in bailouts last year.

But Barroso said the offer of financial aid, expected to be finalised by mid-May and only paid out after a new Portuguese government is elected after a June 5 general election, “will be a medium-term programme with strict conditions.”