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Cyprus, Italy the hot topics on the Eurogroup meeting agenda

Eurozone finance ministers gather in Brussels today to discuss the possibility of extending the maturity of Ireland and Portugal’s rescue loans. Other meeting agenda highlights include the issue of the bailout for Cyprus and the post-electoral situation in Italy.

The rescue program for Cyprus is on the Eurogroup’s agenda again after Nicos Anastasiades was elected president last week. Cyprus's new finance minister, Michalis Sarris, is due to resume talks with international lenders on the 17 billion euro aid package. He already signalized that the country was willing to carry out the required privatization of state assets and a restructuring of its financial services sector, but that the depositor bail-in was out of the question.

The political landscape in Italy, following the inconclusive general election last week, is another important issue which will be discussed by the Eurogroup on Monday. The Eurozone Finance ministers will most probably stress the importance of the country continuing to implement austerity measures and carrying out the reform plan initiated by Mario Monti’s government.

Talks are due to begin at 14 GMT and a press conference is to be held around 20 GMT.

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