Germany's SPD urge Merkel's conservatives to speed up euro zone
Berlin: Germany’s Social Democrats on Tuesday raised the pressure on Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives to back proposals to reform the euro zone as agreed in their coalition deal.
“Europe has been waiting for Germany for over a year,” said Carsten Schneider, a senior member of the SPD, in reference to the unusually long coalition building period following last year’s federal election.
“It’s time we become aware of our responsibilities,” Schneider told ARD television.
Conservative lawmakers are due to debate euro zone reforms on Tuesday before Macron visits Merkel in Berlin on Thursday.
Instead, the conservatives say that setting up an EMF under European law would require treaty change “in consultation with national parliaments” - a tricky feat that would take time. They also want an independent EMF, free of European control.
By floating the resolution ahead of Macron’s working meeting with Merkel on Thursday, the conservative lawmakers are flexing their muscles, seeking to safeguard the Bundestag’s ability to veto euro zone aid packages and restricting reform of the bloc.
It was also “totally clear” that any step to develop the existing euro zone bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), into an EMF would not change national parliament’s veto powers, he added.
The remark came in the wake of an interview Zarif gave to US' CBS TV news.
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