30. January 2012–
Officials in Berlin were today reacting to leaked reports that the German government wants an EU “budget commissioner” with power of veto to oversee Greece’s budget decisions.
The reports have sparked fury in Athens over the weekend, coinciding with demonstrations against Angela Merkel, who has demanded stringent repayment conditions of the recent €130bn bailout.
The proposal from the German government, which essentially would force Greece to give up control of its taxation and spending policies, was leaked on Friday afternoon and apparently reads: “Given the disappointing compliance so far, Greece has to accept shifting budgetary sovereignty to the European level for a certain period of time. Budget consolidation has to be put under a strict steering and control system.”
There still seems to be differing opinion within the German cabinet about support for the missive. Martin Kotthaus, a spokesman German finance ministry downplayed the leak, stating in a press conference today that there were many strategies under consideration but that none had been decided upon. But German Economy Minister and vice chancellor, Philipp Roesler took a stronger line, telling Bild: “We need more leadership and monitoring in implementing the course of reform (in Greece)”.
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