Merkel allies reject idea of European finance minister

A detailed view of German Chancellor Angela Merkel attending an event of the CDU/CSU Women Union on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the conservative parties' women organization, in Frankfurt/Main, Germany, 05 May 2018. [EPA-EFE/ARMANDO BABANI]

Leading politicians from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrat party want to pass a resolution at a meeting this week to reject any pooling of debts in Europe and any common fiscal policy without national parliamentary controls, Handelsblatt reported.

The daily business newspaper, citing sources from the conservative bloc’s parliamentary leadership, said the senior politicians also oppose European Commission plans for a European finance minister.

The group includes the parliamentary leaders of the conservative bloc in the Bundestag, the European Parliament as well as from Germany’s 16 states, Handelsblatt reported.

Merkel will join them on Monday for a meeting in Frankfurt.

The report highlights the resistance among Merkel’s conservatives to any euro zone reforms that could see more German taxpayers’ money being used to fund other member states.

The conservatives are nervous about European Union reform after bleeding support to the anti-euro Alternative for Germany (AfD) party at national elections last September.

Last month, Merkel called for a spirit of compromise on reforming the euro zone at a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron, who pressed for solidarity among members of the currency union.

Merkel urges ‘compromise’ on eurozone reform

Germany’s Angela Merkel called for a spirit of “compromise” on reforming the euro zone at a meeting on Thursday (19 April) with French President Emmanuel Macron, who pressed for “solidarity” among members of the currency union.

Meeting in Berlin on 19 April, the French and German leaders stressed their common will to reform the EU, saying they would present a united front at a June meeting of European Union leaders that will address the reform of the 19-member euro zone, among other issues.

But while Merkel agreed the eurozone was “not yet sufficiently crisis-proof”, the pair did not bridge their fundamental differences on economic and fiscal policy.

At pains to present a united front, the pair stressed they would tackle a range of issues beyond the euro zone reform, including migrant policy which is one of Berlin’s most pressing priorities.

“No monetary union can exist without elements of convergence,” the French leader told a news conference with Merkel in the German capital before their talks.

“There are French proposals, but there are also German proposals,” Merkel retorted.

Not all Macron's EU reforms possible, German finance minister says

German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz said EU reforms proposed by French President Emmanuel Macron should be addressed before European elections next year, but added that some of the proposals were not feasible.

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