(Bloomberg) -- Germany would need shares of Commerzbank AG to more than triple in order to break even on its investment in the lender, the Finance Ministry told lawmakers in response to questions about the bank’s merger talks with Deutsche Bank AG.

Germany, which bailed out Commerzbank during the financial crisis, still owned about 15.6 percent in the lender at the end of 2017, it said in a written response sent March 28. To exit the investment without a loss, it would need a share price of 26 euros, compared with about 7.80 euros now.

The Finance Ministry declined to say at what price it would support a takeover or whether it would keep its stake or seek to exit.

Finance Minister Olaf Scholz has been among the few policy makers to signal support for a potential deal, calling publicly for national lenders big enough to compete with international rivals and serve the country’s export-driven economy. Before the two banks started formal talks last month, he and his deputy had intensified talk with leaders of both companies.

At two of these occasions, they were joined by other financial services firms, the Finance Ministry said in its written statement. Among them were hedge funds Eisler Capital and Rokos Capital Management, as well as BNP Paribas SA Chairman Jean Lemierre.

To contact the reporter on this story: Steven Arons in Frankfurt at sarons@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Dale Crofts at dcrofts@bloomberg.net, Christian Baumgaertel

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