Slovakia ratified the establishment of a permanent bailout fund, the euro region’s main vehicle for fighting the lingering debt crisis.
Lawmakers in Bratislava, Slovakia, voted 118 to 20, with five abstentions, today to approve the 500 billion-euro ($628 billion) measure. The so-called European Stability Mechanism was approved by Finland yesterday.
European leaders are relying on the funds to prevent the spreading of the region’s debt crisis, which has left four countries, including Spain, in need of financial assistance. The permanent bailout fund will succeed the temporary European Financial Stability Facility, or EFSF, which has been used to provide emergency loans to Ireland, Portugal and Greece.
Slovakia, which adopted the euro in 2009, rattled financial markets in October when it held up the enhancement of the ESM’s predecessor. The ESM is due to become operational next month, once the treaty has been approved by other euro area states including Germany, representing at least 90 percent of its capital.
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