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German minister backs bigger GM contribution at Opel

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German minister backs bigger GM contribution at Opel

February 23, 2010 11:16 CET

BERLIN, Feb 23 – German Economy Minister Rainer Bruederle said he understands demands for a greater contribution from General Motors Co. toward the cost of restructuring Opel.

Germany's Handelsblatt newspaper reported Monday that German government sources want GM to raise its share of the 3.3 billion-euro ($4.5 billion) reorganization costs for its Opel arm before Berlin agrees to state aid.

GM is asking European countries with Opel plants to contribute 2.7 billion euros ($3.7 billion) of aid toward a restructuring to bring Opel into profit. Germany alone is being asked for 1.5 billion euros ($2.05 billion) in loans or loan guarantees.

Handelsblatt cited the sources as saying GM should pay for at least half – or 1.65 billion euros ($2.25 billion) – instead of the 600 million ($820.5 million) it has committed.

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