United States welcomes Cyprus rescue plan

WASHINGTON, March 25 Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:44pm EDT

WASHINGTON, March 25 (Reuters) - The U.S. Treasury Department welcomed Cyprus' last-ditch agreement with international lenders to avoid economic meltdown, saying it was important to protect insured depositors and shutter troubled banks.

Cyprus will receive a 10 billion euro ($13 billion) rescue package to prop up its troubled banking system, in return for closing down its second-largest bank and inflicting heavy losses on big depositors.

"It is critical to lay the foundation for a return to financial stability and growth in Cyprus," the Treasury said in a statement on Monday, adding that financial stability in the euro zone is important to the United States. The European Union is the United States' largest trading partner.

"We will continue monitoring developments closely as details are finalized and the agreement is implemented," the Treasury added.