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January 7, 2013

Austria plugs regional finance loopholes after scandal


“Speaking a day after federal and provincial officials agreed on steps to curb speculative use of public funds, Maria Fekter said in a radio interview that local authorities had already acted to reduce deals that had potential to blow up.”

“Lots of people learned from the situation after 2007 and the risks that emerged on financial markets, changed their ways and gradually reduced very risky positions,” she told state broadcaster ORF.”

“But she noted that regions still had lots of foreign- currency debt on their books that needed to be cut in phases.”

“The head of the country’s auditing agency warned in a magazine interview this week that the Salzburg case could be just the tip of an iceberg and that “ticking time bombs worth billions” may lurk in local authorities’ opaque finances.”


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