The German government was set to give Opel credit to survive the global slump and financial distress at parent General Motors, a press report said on Tuesday.

The move was prompted by a sense of urgency concerning the situation at Opel, which employs around 25,000 people in Germany, the Financial Times Deutschland said, without identifying sources, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported.

To date, Berlin has only evoked the possibility of providing loan guarantees to help Opel obtain critical financing as GM goes hat in hand to the US government for aid as well.

Opel supervisory board member Armin Schild has estimated the German car maker needs at least EUR3.3bn (US$4.2bn) in cash to survive and would go bankrupt by May or June if no state aid is forthcoming, Bild newspaper reported Saturday.

Some politicians would like the government to take a direct stake in Opel, but the idea is subject to debate within Germany's broad left-right ruling coalition.

Berlin has told Opel to present a viable business plan if it wants public aid, and that is expected to happen on Friday.

A separation from GM is also under consideration, AFP noted.

GM acquired Opel in the 1920s.