On December 31, 2016, the Group's interest-bearing liabilities stood at EUR 125.4 (127.9) million. Aspo Group’s credit portfolio is reviewed with regard to the average interest rate, the duration of interest rate position, average loan maturity, and relation between fixed-rate and floating-rate liabilities. At the end of 2016, the average interest rate on interest-bearing liabilities was 1.8% (1.7), the duration of interest rate position was 2.1 (2.4) years, the average loan maturity was 4.2 (4.4) years, and the share of fixed-rate liabilities was 42% (39).
The Group’s cash and cash equivalents totaled EUR 22.6 (23.9) million at the end of the 2016 financial period. Aspo Plc had a Finnish commercial paper program of EUR 80 million at the end of 2016, and it remained fully unused. In addition, Aspo Plc had revolving credit facilities with selected partner banks, totaling EUR 40 million, which remained fully unused. During the 2016 financial period, Aspo Plc signed a revolving credit facility agreement of EUR 20 million, which replaced the expiring agreement of the same amount. In addition, ESL Shipping Ltd signed vessel financing agreements of EUR 50 million to finance its newbuilding projects. Aspo Plc issued a new hybrid bond of EUR 25 million. The fixed coupon rate of the bond is 6.75% per annum. The bond has no specified maturity date, but the company may exercise an early redemption option after four years of its issuance date.
The development of the Group’s capital structure is regularly monitored mainly through the equity ratio and gearing. On December 31, 2016, the equity ratio was 37.4% (33.8), and gearing was 89.8% (101.4).