Cyprus: New Bond Issues Help Repay Russian Loan Faster

FILE - People enter the entrance of the Cyprus central bank building in capital Nicosia, Cyprus, Thursday, March 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

NICOSIA (AP) — Cyprus’ finance minister says new bond issues will save the country money by helping to pay off the remainder of a 2.5 billion-euro ($2.8 billion) Russian loan more quickly.

Harris Georgiades told state radio Thursday the combined interest rate from the five-year bond issue and Cyprus’ first-ever 30-year issue is under 2%, meaning the country will pay less and have more time to repay.

Cyprus still owes Russia 1.56 billion euros ($1.75 billion). It got the loan with a 2.5% interest rate amid a 2012 financial crisis.

Cyprus on Wednesday secured 500 million euros from its five-year bond issued at a 0.625% rate. The 30-year issue raised 750 million euros at 2.75%.

Georgiades said Cyprus wants to take advantage of an early repayment clause in its loan deal with Russia.

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