ECB rate cut possible if situation does not improve: Makuch

BRATISLAVA Fri Dec 7, 2012 7:54am EST

BRATISLAVA (Reuters) - The European Central Bank may cut interest rates next year if the euro zone economy does not improve, ECB Governing Council member Jozef Makuch said on Friday.

The ECB kept interest rates on hold at its policy meeting on Thursday, but Mario Draghi said there had been "a wide discussion" on rate cuts, which has sparked expectation that the ECB may be ready to lower rates in the coming months.

Makuch, who is also the head of Slovakia's central bank, said the debate was "very serious", but there was no need to change interest rates - currently at a record low of 0.75 percent - in December.

"If the situation does not improve, and there is relatively a small chance there will be a significant improvement, it is possible to expect a move in interest rates next year," said Makuch said at a conference.

(Reporting by Martin Santa, writing Eva Kuehnen)