Eurozone wants Greek interest rates below 3.5 pct - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Eurozone wants Greek interest rates below 3.5 pct

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BRUSSELS (AP) -- The head of the Eurogroup says that eurozone finance ministers want the average interest rate on new, lower-value bonds issued as part of a debt relief for Greece to be "well below 3.5 percent" -- far lower than the rates offered by representatives of Greece's private creditors.

Jean-Claude Juncker, the prime minister of Luxembourg who also chairs the meetings of eurozone finance ministers, says the 3.5 percent referred to the average interest rate for the period until 2020.

The eurozone wants banks and other financial firms to swap their old Greek bonds for new ones with half the face value in an effort to make the country's debts sustainable.

Juncker said early Tuesday that Greece's debt had to reach 120 percent of GDP by 2020 and that rescue loans from the eurozone and the IMF would be limited to euro130 billion.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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