July 13, 2011 / 10:06 AM / 8 years ago

Germany says EFSF could be used for debt buybacks

BERLIN, July 13 (Reuters) - Germany’s finance ministry said on Wednesday that funds from the euro zone’s rescue mechanism could in theory already be used by members of the bloc to buy back their own bonds, suggesting a shift in Berlin’s stance.

“According to the instruments of the EFSF (European Financial Stability Fund), it is theoretically already possible that a state gets money and then uses it to buy back, normally at a significant discount, a portion of its debt,” finance ministry spokeman Martin Kotthaus told a news conference.

“This is already possible today under this method,” he said.

Until now, Germany has opposed the idea of using EFSF funds to purchase bonds on the secondary market and the comments suggested a shift in Berlin’s position.

He added that there were “no taboos” on different possible solutions to the debt crisis in the currency zone. A government spokeswoman played down prospects for a special summit of euro zone leaders this week, saying German Chancellor Angela Merkel already had appointments in Germany on Friday.

Reporting by Gernot Heller; Writing by Stephen Brown

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