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Minister: Slovenia Doing Everything to Avoid Eurozone Aid

Luxembourg, 22 June (STA) - Slovenia is doing everything to avoid having to request for aid from Europe's rescue funds, Finance Minister Janez Šušteršič told the press Friday morning as eurozone's finance ministers continued their two-day meeting in Luxembourg. He added that Slovenia wanted the planned aid for Spain's banks to come from the EU's Stability Mechanism (ESM).

The government believes that asking for aid would be a bad signal at this moment, said Šušteršič, adding that aid from Europe's rescue funds was "the last resort".

"If it is possible - and we think it is - to get private investors for banks, partly now, partly by the end of the year, such aid will not be necessary," said Šušteršič ahead of today's meeting.

As regards to Spain, Šušteršič reiterated yesterday's statement of eurozone head Jean-Claude Juncker that Spain was to request for aid by Monday.

The aid has practically been agreed upon, the minister said, adding that Spain's banks were estimated to need some EUR 60bn, while the eurozone was willing to provide up to EUR 100bn.

Šušteršič expects that the ESM will be ratified by sufficient number of countries by the next eurozone ministerial on 9 and 10 July so that the aid for Spain will come from this mechanism.

So far, the mechanism has been ratified by eight countries, including Slovenia, while the parliaments of Germany and Italy, two big contributors to the mechanism, are yet to endorse it.

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