BERLIN, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- Because of growing deforestation, Germany has decided to cut part of its funds for projects in Brazil designed to protect the Amazon forest, German daily Tagesspiegel reported Saturday.
"The policy of the Brazilian government in the Amazon raises doubts as to whether a consistent reduction of deforestation rates is still being pursued," Tagesspiegel quoted German Environment Minister Svenja Schulze as saying.
Only when this becomes clear again, will the project cooperation be continued, she added.
A first step by the German government would be to block payment of 35 million euros (39.5 million U.S. dollars), the newspaper reported.
Deforestation in Brazil's rainforest jumped about 67 percent in the first seven months of the year, according to preliminary data from Brazil's Space Research Agency, which the government has criticized as misleading.
Brazil has approximately 60 percent of the Amazon basin within its border, which is being deforested at an increasing speed to creat more farmland.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has long been skeptical of environmental issues, pledging instead to allow more clearances and make economic use of the Amazon.
Germany nonetheless plans to continue contributing to the Amazon Fund, a forest preservation initiative created in 2008 and funded by Norway and to a small extent also by Germany.