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Germany wants the billions of euros that have not been tapped from European Union structural aid funds to be channeled into a separate fund for stimulating growth in ailing member states, a government source told Reuters.
Some countries such as Greece are finding it difficult to tap available regional EU aid funds for various reasons, such as their inability to bring in the necessary co-financing money in the wake of budget cuts.
Instead of paying this money back to donor states, the EU should channel it into a new fund under the administration of the European Commission to boost competitiveness and growth, the source said.
"The German government will campaign for the creation of such a fund within the framework of upcoming negotiations," the source said, noting that discussions over the EU's financial framework for the period 2014-2020 were beginning.
This would apply however only to the structural funds that the EU countries that have been bailed out during the crisis - Greece, Portugal and Ireland - have not been able to tap.
Berlin wants to resolve the sovereign debt crisis that has pummeled the euro zone for two years with measures that prevent the European Central Bank having to intervene more forcefully.
In an interview published earlier on Wednesday, ECB policymaker and the head of Germany's Bundesbank Jens Weidmann reiterated his opposition to the ECB stepping up its role in fighting the eurozone debt crisis.
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