Austria’s Fekter Doesn’t See Spain Asking for Full Bailout

Austrian Finance Minister Maria Fekter said she doesn’t expect Spain to request a second bailout from its European partners.

“I don’t expect that they will ask for help,” Fekter said yesterday in a Bloomberg Television interview in Alpbach, Austria, noting that Spain managed to refinance itself on the capital markets this week. “It’s clear that we have a program for the bank situation in Spain, but not for the bond market.”

Spain, which sold 3.6 billion euros ($4.5 billion) of bills on Aug. 28, is considering a request for a full-fledged rescue a month after locking in as much as 100 billion euros in loans for its banks as it waits for the European Central Bank to detail its bond-buying plan. That may not happen before Germany’s Constitutional Court rules Sept. 12 on the legality of Europe’s permanent bailout fund, two central bank officials, who declined to be identified, said last week.

On Greece, Fekter said that giving the country more time to meet the conditions of a second international bailout would end up costing more, and it would be “very, very difficult” to explain such a move to taxpayers who are footing the bill.

“More money is in the whole euro area not explainable anymore to the taxpayers,” she said. At the same time Fekter said a Greek exit from the euro area would be the most expensive option.

“We have calculated scenarios and this would be too expensive and it would not help the Greeks as some think,” Fekter said. “The debts will remain in euros and if the Greeks are shifting back to perhaps the drachma, they’d have to pay with a weak currency,” she said. “This would be very, very expensive for the Greek authorities.”

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