The President of the Portuguese state debt management agency said in an interview on Monday that the four percent interest rates for Portuguese debt “are acceptable” and the most important thing is to manage the risk of refinancing.
In an interview with daily newspaper Público, Cristina Casalinho said, “If we continue to see primary surpluses like we did in 2016 and I hope that will happen again this year (…) rates of four percent are acceptable.”
According to the president of the Treasury and Debt Management Agency (previously known as the IGCP), Portugal only had interest rates well above four percent at the height of the crisis, in 2011, when it was excluded from the debt market.
Casalinho added that Portugal was also seeking authorisation to repay more debt from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
To comply with the plan to pay back over €3.5 billion of the IMF loan in 2018, the Portuguese authorities will need to ask their European partners for a new authorisation to pay the debt ahead of time.
Casalinho explained that this year the Portuguese Treasury plans early repayment of just €1.7 billion this year as, at the moment, that is the maximum amount it is authorised to pay.