Alexis Tsipras & Angela Merkel
Germany has complained that it is being unfairly made to pay for Greece's financial irresponsibilityAlain Jocard/AFP/Getty

Germany has benefitted "significantly" from the debt crisis in Greece as investors have flocked to German bonds as a safe haven, a study has found.

German think tank IWH says Berlin saved more than €100bn (£70bn, $110bn) - or over 3% of its gross domestic product - in interest payments between 2010 and 2015.

Since Greece received its first bailout in 2010, German government bond yields have fallen steadily from an average of around 3% to 0.7% as investors consider it a safe bet.

Berlin has contributed some €90bn in rescue packages for Greece to date so even if Athens was to default on its debt, the German government will still have profited.

The finding is contrary to German claims that its taxpayers are being unfairly forced to foot the bill for Greece's fiscal recklessness.

'Substantial savings'

"The balanced budget in Germany is largely the result of lower interest payments due to the European debt crisis," IWH said in its report. "A significant part of this reduction is directly attributable to the Greek crisis.

"When discussing the costs to the German taxpayer of saving Greece, these benefits should not be overlooked, as they tend to be larger than the expenses, even in a scenario where Greece does not repay any of its debts."

It continued: "Even if Greece indeed does not repay any of its loans, Germany comes out ahead. If Greece does pay or pays at least in part, the savings are substantial."

Greece and its international creditors are negotiating to thrash out a third bailout deal for the country, with Germany demanding "strict" conditions in return for the latest rescue.

A deal needs to be struck by 20 August, when Athens has a debt repayment due to the European Central Bank.