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Portugal's public debt rises 1.6 billion euros

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Staff Writer | February 2, 2018
Portugal ended 2017 with 1.6 billion euros ($2 billion) more public debt than it started the year with, the Bank of Portugal revealed.
Portugal street
Europe   Public debt fell for the fourth consecutive month
Public debt fell for the fourth consecutive month in December 2017, thanks to the early repayment of an International Monetary Fund loan.

Even so, the end-of-year total stood at 242.6 billion euros, versus 240.95 billion euros at 2016's close.

The central bank attributed the increase to extra debt issuance.

The government has nevertheless met its 2017 debt goals, having set itself a target of 242.9 billion euros.

What remains to be seen is whether it met its debt-to-GDP target. The 2018 State Budget estimated a ratio of 126.2 percent, while the European Union (EU) set Portugal a target of 127.7 percent.

All will be revealed when the National Statistics Institute (INE) publishes Q4 figures for 2017 on Feb. 14.