Schauble U-turn: Portugal suddenly a “success story”

After all his portents of doom and gloom, German finance minister Wolfgang Schauble seems finally to have let Portugal off his critical hook.

Reacting to the government’s request to pre-empt a €10 billion repayment to the IMF, he said as he went into a meeting of Eurogroup leaders that this demonstrates the troika’s adjustment programme was “a success story”.

Since Portugal started to repay the IMF ‘ahead of maturity’, it has reimbursed more than €14.5 billion of the €26 billion originally loaned as part of the €79 billion bailout.

The decision to go for an earlybird repayment saves €1.3 billion in interest payments, and is likely to be given the green-light by the end of business today.

Only a few months ago, Schauble trashed Portugal under the Socialist government, suggesting it was “going the wrong way” (click here).

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