Cyprus central government debt amounted to €21.05 billion at the end of 2018, marking an increase of 15% compared with 2017, the Finance Ministry’s Public Debt Management Office (PDMO) announced on Tuesday.
Cyprus’ public debt in 2018 deteriorated as the government issued a series of domestic bonds amounting to €3.2 billion to facilitate the sale of the performing operations of the state-owned Cyprus Cooperative Bank (CCB) to Hellenic Bank.
According to data released by the PDMO, the central government debt peaked at €22.41 billion at the end of the third quarter of 2018, with the government repaying €1.35 billion in early repayments and bond maturities.
In December and November, the PDMO repaid maturing bonds amounting total €501 million, while the short-term debt redemption for the last quarter of 2018 amounted to €300 million. Repayment for retail bonds amounted to €17 million.
Loan amortizations amounted to €850 million out of which €808 million are early repayments to the Central Bank of Cyprus for €484 million and to Hellenic Bank for €324 million.
According to the PDMO data, debt redemptions in 2019 increased to €2.3 billion. The largest debt redemptions concerned payment of a €750 million bond held by Hellenic Bank, two installments to the Russian loan concluded in 2011 with an initial value of €2.5 billion.
Cyprus’ highest financing needs are scheduled for 2018 amounting to €2.56 billion.
The European Stability Mechanism remains Cyprus’ biggest individual creditor with €6.3 billion or 31% of Cyprus’ total debt, closely followed by foreign bonds (EMTN) with €6 billion or 24% of total debt. Domestic bonds in end-2018 amounted to €3.85 billion or 18% of the island’s debt.
Cyprus central government debt amounts to 99.7% of the island`s total gross debt and excludes debt of Social Security Investments, state-owned enterprises categorized within the central government and the debt of local authorities.
(Cyprus News Agency)