Opel has denied its pension obligations would be an obstacle to a sale, as claimed in an earlier newspaper report.

Refuting a story published by the Financial Times Deutschland (FTD), an Opel spokesman described speculation a buyer would have to fund pension liabilities as absurd, Reuters reported.

“Adam Opel GmbH has built provisions for the benefit claims of the pension plan. Expenses for the payment of these pledged claims are part of the annual business plan of the Adam Opel GmbH,” the spokesman said, though declining to specify exact financial obligations.

The FTD had quoted a person involved in talks about the future of the company as saying that Opel had nearly EUR4bn (US$5.3bn) in pension obligations: “This is a high number and a potential problem.”

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