Portugal to pay 5.1% average rate on bailout loan: minister

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Portugal will pay an average interest rate of about 5.1 percent on the 78-billion-euro ($110-billion) EU-IMF bailout agreed on Monday, its finance minister said.

"The interest rate will depend on market conditions," Fernando Teixeira dos Santos was quoted by the Lusa agency as saying in Brussels.

Under current conditions, the average rate would vary between 5.0 percent in the first three years and 5.2 percent in following years, he said, adding that Portugal was to receive a first payment of 18 billion euros by the end of May or beginning of June.

European finance ministers on Monday backed a three-year 78-billion-euro EU-IMF bailout for Portugal on condition Lisbon embarks on a major raft of public sell-offs.

The ministers agreed unanimously to rescue Portugal, a statement said, making it the third eurozone country in the space of one year to receive a multi-billion-euro bailout after Greece and Ireland.

© 2011 AFP

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