Russian officials have made it clear to Cyprus Finance Minister Michalis Sarris that the only thing under discussion extending an existing loan of the order of €2.5 billion, government sources said here, on Thursday.

Sarris had a telephone conversation with Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades earlier on in the evening, briefing him on the results of his visit to Moscow, so far.

The Eurogroup reached last week an agreement in Brussels which provided for a one-off levy on savings that stung small account holders to the tune of 6.75% in exchange for a €10 billion sovereign bailout deal, whereas deposits over 100.000 euro would be charged with a 9.9% levy. The agreement also included an increase in corporate tax from 10% to 12.5%.

A relevant bill, with some modifications, was rejected by the Cyprus House of Representatives on Tuesday evening.

Excluded from the international markets, Cyprus applied last June for financial assistance from the EU bailout mechanism, after its banks sought state support following massive write downs of the Greek bond holdings amounting to €2.5 billion or 25% of the island`s GDP, as result of the Greek sovereign debt haircut.

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