NICOSIA (Reuters) - International lenders resume bailout talks with Cyprus on Friday, authorities said, in an attempt to secure badly needed financial aid by the end of the year for an island exposed to Greece’s debt meltdown.
A team representing the lenders, known as the troika, would arrive on Thursday and talks would resume on Friday, Cypriot government spokesman Stefanos Stefanou said in a statement.
He said the aim was to “secure an agreement on the program for a loan” to Cyprus.
Cyprus requested financial aid from its European Union partners and the IMF in June after its two largest banks sought state support from a writedown in Greek debt, and to plug its own fiscal slippage.
The troika has demanded wage cuts to one of the most highly paid public sector workforces in the euro zone, as well as pension reform, privatizations and the creation of a “bad bank”, where soured assets in the banking system will be parked.
Last week the Cypriot finance minister said there were still disagreements with the troika on privatizations, its call to scrap wage indexation and the recapitalization needs of commercial banks.
Reporting by Michele Kambas; Editing by John Stonestreet