Ireland and Portugal present joint request for an aid repayment extension (Barcelona) - Ireland and Portugal are seeking better conditions on the repayment of previous bailout aids received. The aim is to extend the payment of maturities further down the road.

Ireland's finance minister is looking for such an option in order to ease the country's near-term burden and accelerate the return to normal borrowing conditions in the financial markets, after being locked out of them back in September of 2010.

As Reuters notes: "Ireland's Michael Noonan told journalists he and his Portuguese peer had presented a joint request for an extension of the maturity of the loans from the European Financial Stability Facility."

Reuters adds, quoting Noonan: "We arranged a way of presenting a joint request. If you had a term loan to build an extension to your house and you were able to convert it into a mortgage which you will extend over a long period, you can see that your repayment profile will come down. It has been referred to a group of officials to examine it."

Jean-Claude Juncker, the outgoing president of the Eurogroup, is thought to examine the request in the case of Portugal.