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Eurozone was 'very close to collapse'

17 May 2012 Last updated at 01:36 BST

A European Central Bank board member has conceded the ECB may have "saved" the eurozone banking system and eurozone economy in Autumn 2011 by providing one trillion euros of emergency loans to hundreds of European banks at an interest rate of just 1%.

ECB Executive Board member, Benoit Coeure, told Robert Peston: "We were very close to a collapse in the banking system in the euro area, which in itself would have also led to a collapse in the economy and deflation, And this is something that the ECB could not accept."

Robert Peston's Great Euro Crash is broadcast on BBC Two at 21:00 BST on Thursday 17 May.