• Germany's news in English
 

Germany approves Cyprus bailout package

Published: 18 Apr 2013 13:34 GMT+02:00

A final tally by the Bundestag, the lower house, showed 486 deputies voted for

the measure, with 103 against and 11 abstentions.

MPs also overwhelmingly backed a deal by eurozone finance ministers giving Ireland and Portugal an extra seven years to repay aid they have received to allow them to consolidate progress.

Eurozone finance ministers formally approved on Friday new terms for the Cyprus debt rescue that will cost far more than first thought - €23 billion rather than €17 billion.

Eurozone partners and the International Monetary Fund are to provide €10 billion of this amount while the Cypriot government will have to find the rest.

Germany will kick in about one-third of the international assistance. The debt rescue involves a radical restructuring of Cyprus's bloated banking sector, with an economy heavily dependent on financial services now expected to shrink by up to 12.5 percent over the next two years.

Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble had urged MPs to back the Cyprus bailout, citing the gradual recovery of other stricken eurozone members as evidence the aid-for-reforms strategy worked.

Speaking to the Bundestag, he said that countries such as Portugal and Ireland had shown that tough budget cutting coupled with international assistance could save a debt-mired country.

"Both have undertaken enormous efforts, are fulfilling the requirements of their [rescue] programmes and are on the right track," he said.

Schäuble also noted substantial progress made in the last three years in taming the eurozone crisis, with economic progress such as a hike in exports from southern European countries as well as a sharp drop in public deficits.

Striking a conciliatory note, the usually tough-talking Schäuble noted that Germany's preaching of austerity in Europe sometimes lacked compassion for the sacrifices made by the people of crisis-battered countries.

"In our country in particular where the euro crisis is not felt in everyday life we must issue a reminder that the people in Greece, Portugal and Cyprus are going through tough times," he said.

But he stressed there was "no other way" than fiscal discipline to achieve sustainable long-term stability and growth.

Polls show that Germans strongly back the crisis-fighting strategies of Chancellor Angela Merkel and her fellow conservative Schäuble, with five months to go until a general election.

AFP/jlb

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Wolf spotted in North Rhine-Westphalia
File photo: DPA

Wolf spotted in North Rhine-Westphalia

Camera traps have spotted a wolf for the second time in a month in North Rhine-Westphalia, the state environment ministry reported on Friday. READ  

German ranchers murdered in Paraguay
Paraguayan police on patrol in an area known to contain EPP rebels. File photo: DPA

German ranchers murdered in Paraguay

The Foreign Ministry in Berlin confirmed that two Germans living in Paraguay were kidnapped and killed earlier this week. READ  

AfD braces for busy conference weekend
"Vote AfD!" reads the flyover message. Photo: DPA

AfD braces for busy conference weekend

As leaders of the Germany's anti-Euro upstart party Alternative for Germany (AfD) prepare for its party conference this weekend, the potential for chaos is rising. READ  

Sudden dose of winter causes traffic chaos
Snow in Oberharz. Photo: DPA

Sudden dose of winter causes traffic chaos

UPDATE: Two people were rescued from avalanches as a blast of winter has taken Germany by surprise, while snow and ice accounted for several traffic accidents across the country on Friday. READ  

BND collects 220 million phone records a day
Photo: DPA

BND collects 220 million phone records a day

Germany's foreign intelligence agency, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND) collects 220 million pieces of information about foreign phone calls and SMS every day, Zeit Online reported on Friday. READ  

U-turn on minimum wage for foreign drivers
Photo: DPA

U-turn on minimum wage for foreign drivers

Germany temporarily hit the brakes Friday on applying its new minimum wage to foreign truck drivers transiting the country in a move welcomed by Poland, which vigorously opposed the system. READ  

Crises make Germany EU foreign policy leader
Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier. Photo: DPA

Crises make Germany EU foreign policy leader

Foreign policy think-tank the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) gave Germany top marks in its annual check-up of EU member states released on Thursday. READ  

Prost! Beer sales hop up for first gain in 8 years
Photo: DPA

Prost! Beer sales hop up for first gain in 8 years

New figures released Friday by federal statistics office Destatis are numbers breweries can drink to, as German beer consumption saw its first year-on-year rise since 2006. READ  

Germany has thousands of uni spots open
Photo: DPA

Germany has thousands of uni spots open

New research published by Spiegel on Friday shows that there are thousands of university placesa unoccupied across the country, while certain hot spots cope with too much demand. READ  

Borussia coach admits to 'downward spiral'
Borussia Dortmund coach Jürgen Klopp at a press conference. Photo: DPA

Borussia coach admits to 'downward spiral'

Borussia Dortmund coach Jürgen Klopp admits feeling the pressure as his side resume their fight to stay in Germany's top flight on Saturday at fellow Champions League side Bayer Leverkusen. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Business & Money
FATCA: 'The age of financial privacy is over'
Gallery
The best regional foods TTIP opponents want to protect
Photo: DPA
Features
The rise and spread of Pegida
Photo: Shutterstock
Culture
This cosplayer did not think his plan through
National
Europe in statistics - from Spain to Sweden
Photo: DPA
Politics
The Local's report from Pegida's largest ever demonstration.
Sponsored Article
Top-notch tech boosts bilingual schools
National
Six stories that will rock Germany this year
Photo: DPA
National
Terror alert at a new high. Should you be worried?
Dresden skyline and river by night. Photo: DPA
Politics
What does Dresden have against Muslims?
Photo: DPA
National
What were your favourite news stories of 2014?
Gallery
Top 12 German idioms
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
Photo: DPA
National
This German was abducted and tortured by the CIA
Culture
10 top tips for partying in Germany
Photo: DPA
Technology
What does the Chancellor see as the future of the internet?
Photo: DPA
Berlin
The Local's series on 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,971
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd