The European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) was created as a temporary crisis resolution mechanism by the euro area Member States in June 2010. The EFSF has provided financial assistance to Ireland, Portugal and Greece. The assistance was financed by the EFSF through the issuance of bonds and other debt instruments on capital markets.
A permanent rescue mechanism, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) started its operations on 8 October 2012. The ESM is currently the sole mechanism for responding to new requests for financial assistance by euro area Member States. It has provided loans to Spain and Cyprus.
The EFSF will not provide financial assistance to any further countries. The final ongoing EFSF assistance programme (for Greece) expired on 30 June 2015. However, even after this date, the EFSF will continue to operate in order to:
- receive loan repayments from beneficiary countries;
- make interest and principal payments to holders of EFSF bonds;
- roll over outstanding EFSF bonds, as the maturity of loans provided to Ireland, Portugal and Greece is longer than the maturity of bonds issued by the EFSF.The mission of both the EFSF and ESM is to safeguard financial stability in Europe by providing financial assistance to countries of the euro area. The two institutions share the same staff and offices located in Luxembourg.
European Financial Stability Facility
6a, Circuit de la Foire Internationale, L-1347 Luxembourg
Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
R.C.S. Luxembourg B153414