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Euro zone to sign off on bailout fund treaty change in early 2020 - Centeno

EU leaders summit in Brussels

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Euro zone governments are likely to sign off on changes to the treaty on their bailout fund ESM very early next year, rather than in December as was initially planned, the chairman of euro zone finance ministers Mario Centeno said on Wednesday.

"We worked a lot on this during this year. We had a decision in June, technical work has been done since then. We will take stock of that today with a view to sign the treaty change very early next year," Centeno told reporters on entering a meeting of euro zone finance ministers.

Planned changes to the ESM treaty are to reduce the risk of investors holding out for a better deal in a potential sovereign debt restructuring and give the bailout fund the possibility to mediate between the sovereign and investors.

(Reporting by Jan Strupczewski and Francesco Guarascio)