Germany’s Merkel to work with Italy’s populist new govt
04 June, 2018, 20:17 | Author: Martin Tyler
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in an interview on Sunday that she supports the idea of a joint European defense force, adding that the initiative could even be open to UK's participation after Brexit, Politico reports.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel sat down with Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung to discuss the eurozone, immigration, the rise of populism, and reforms in the European Union.
In her first detailed response to Emmanuel Macron's euro-zone ideas, the German chancellor blends caution and compromise: Yay to a Euro-IMF and deeper common defense, nay to Italian debt relief. Most Eastern European states have shunned the deal, leaving countries like Greece and Italy complaining of unfair burdens.
When it comes to assessing Italy's new governing coalition, made up of the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) and the far-right League, DW noted that Merkel has remained among the calmer voices.
Merkel said the initiative "needs to fit into the structure of defense cooperation", which she said should bring down the number of different European Union weapon systems from 180 to "about 30". "If the whole euro zone is in danger, the EMF must be able to grant long-term credit in order to help countries", Merkel told the paper. "Such loans would be spread over 30 years and be conditioned on sweeping structural reforms". Merkel also said that a future EMF would be organised on an intergovernmental basis and national parliaments of member countries would have oversight.
As for her comments on Macron's ideas, Merkel said she supports the idea of transforming the European Monetary Fund (EFF) rescue fund she supports its transformation into an Stabilization Monetary Fund with the power to provide short-term credit lines to member states in crisis due to the large your government debt.
Italy weighs new chances for gov't based on vote Conte's government faces mandatory confidence votes next week in parliament, where the two governing parties have a slim majority. Five Star leader Luigi Di Maio is minister for economic development and both he and Salvini will be deputy prime ministers.
For example, he is calling for the creation a eurozone budget and a eurozone finance minister.
Italy's new interior minister, Matteo Salvini, has said that Italians "aren't the slaves" of European Union powerhouses Germany and France.
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The retaliatory tariffs they've promised make no more sense in narrow economic terms than the US tariffs they're objecting to. He said: "We chose also some symbolic products like Harley-Davidson to make clear here is a red card".
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