The German government is continuing to look at options for helping Opel.

An economy ministry spokesman told a news conference: “We are still working on this, there are various options and scenarios we are looking at … and developments in the United States are of course important.”

A decision is expected by Christmas.

A German regional state has already passed a law giving the Opel EUR500m in loan guarantees in case parent General Motors goes bankrupt.

The region is Hesse, home to the Ruesselsheim plant, near Frankfurt, which has 18,300 employees.