To help euro zone states in difficulty, Germany’s plan for a “European Monetary Fund” would set strict eligibility criteria that shut out those who are failing to tackle high national debt.

According to German Finance Ministry proposals seen by the Reuters news agency, the fund would be accessible without strings only to countries that had experienced an “asymmetric economic shock outside their political control”.

As reported by Reuters, the proposals, first reported by the newspaper Die Zeit on November 21, do envisage a role for the fund in helping heavily indebted states out of crisis, a task currently carried out by the European Commission. But this would take the form of a more stringent “macro-economic adjustment program with ex-post conditionality”.

Germany, Europe’s largest economy, needs to be debated among Euro zone finance ministers, who are expected to agree by the end of the year on how they want to develop the zone’s financial stabilization funds.