EU finance ministers have offered Slovenia help in rescuing its ailing banks before things get worse. Five countries are now part of Europe's bailout scheme - but Slovenia does not want to be the sixth.
At an informal meeting in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius, Slovenian Finance Minister Uros Cufer had to explain to his 16 eurozone counterparts exactly how his country intends to get out of a banking crisis that is threatening the country's financial system. Eurogroup chief Jereon Dijsselbloem had rather suddenly put Slovenia on the meeting's agenda. For years, Slovenia's banks have been sitting on bad mortgages estimated at around 7 billion euros ($9.3 billion).
The government now wants to liquidate two of the smaller banks and then inject an extra billion euros into the system, Cufer explained. "We still have enough money in the coffers," he said curtly. But Dijsselbloem, also the Dutch finance minister, made clear that this can only be the beginning of a more a thorough restructuring program.Which is working out so well in the rest of Europe?