Eurozone Leaders Approve EUR 110 B Greece LoanWorld | May 8, 2010, Saturday // 11:04| views
The euro's value has fallen because of fears that countries such as Spain and Portugal could suffer similar problems. Photo by BGNES
Leaders of the 16 EU member states that use the euro have approved an EUR 110 B euro loan to Greece to prevent its debt crisis from spreading.
European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the eurozone would do whatever it took to safeguard Greece's financial stability.
In return for the three-year loan, Athens must cut public spending, the BBC reported.
The euro's value has fallen because of fears that countries such as Spain and Portugal could suffer similar problems.
The eurozone leaders also announced proposals for a European Stabilisation Mechanism to preserve financial stability.
At a meeting in Brussels on Friday, the eurozone leaders gave their approval to the EU-International Monetary Fund rescue package for Greece, and committed to "accelerate" plans to reduce deficits.
They also agreed to tighten EU budget rules, put in place more effective sanctions for breaking debt guidelines, and monitor deficits and competitiveness.
All institutions, including the European Central Bank, would use the "full range of means available to ensure the stability of the euro area", they said in a statement.
"We will defend the euro whatever it takes. We have several instruments at our disposal and we will use them," Barroso told a news conference afterwards.
He declined to give any details of the plans, which will be presented to the finance ministers of all 27 EU member states at a meeting on Sunday, but said it would be done under "existing financial possibilities" in the budget.
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