UK could accept equal German, French BAE/EADS stakes: minister

Britain is prepared to explore the possibility of France and Germany both having equal, single-digit stakes in any merger between defence firms EADS and BAE Systems, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said on Monday.

"I think if we were at that position it would be possible to construct something. Whether we would end up getting there I don't know but it would be worth exploring," he said, referring to parity in German and French stakes.

Hammond also said Britain was not prepared to shift its demand that France reduces its stake in the proposed new company below 10 percent.

(Reporting by Mohammed Abbas, editing by Matt Falloon)