The euro zone stands ready to help bail out Cyprus but the burden must be shared by its financial sector otherwise the island's economy will collapse under its public debt, German Finance Minister told a Greek newspaper on Friday.

"The perception that this (Cyprus) problem can be solved only by taxpayers in the euro zone without the participation of major creditors of Cypriot banks cannot be accepted by Europe's citizens," Wolfgang Schaeuble told Greek daily Ta Nea in an interview.

(Reporting by George Georgiopoulos)