Government loan of £3.9bn depends on GM choosing Magna
20 August 2009

Germany says it is prepared to give a 4.5 billion euro (£3.9bn) loan to car maker Opel if its favoured suitor, Canadian car assembly and parts group Magna, is chosen to take over the firm.

However, the German government is only offering the money if Opel is sold to Magna, rather than rival bidder RHJ, which is favoured by many people within General Motors.

Germany's Deputy Economic Minister, Jochen Homann, said the country's federal government, and individual German states with Opel sites, would split the payment of the initial loan.

When asked whether Berlin would offer a similar loan to GM of RHJ is chosen, Homann told the BBC, "The question doesn't arise, because the German government has a preference for Magna's improved offer."

A decision on GM's preferred bidder is possible this Friday (21 August), when GM's board meets to discuss the future of Opel and Vauxhall.

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