FROM EUROPEAN VOICE
Germany’s chancellor to call for convention to draw up rules on tighter political union
Angela Merkel wants leaders of European Union member states to set up a convention for a new EU treaty by the end of the year to formalise steps towards tighter political union, according to German press reports.
Merkel, Germany’s chancellor, wants leaders to agree at their summit in Brussels on 13-14 December to hold a first meeting of a convention on a new treaty, reports the Germany weekly magazine Der Spiegel.
A treaty convention, made up of representatives of the European Parliament and European Commission, as well as of member state governments, is needed to draft a new treaty.
Merkel sees a new EU treaty as necessary to enshrine in law the sharing of sovereignty that she deems necessary in return for the pooling of debt that is being demanded by other eurozone countries.
It would be the latest – and most ambitious – attempt yet to draw a line under the eurozone’s sovereign debt and banking crisis that is now into its third year.
However, it could be a divisive move by the German chancellor who will be faced with opposition to a new treaty from many countries. Germany is likely to want the European Central Bank to be made responsible for scrutinising member states’ budgets under the new rules.
This was a move that many member states decided was unacceptable when they were drawing up the inter-governmental treaty on fiscal discipline earlier this year.
Der Spiegel reports that, at an informal meeting of 10 eurozone foreign ministers, Guido Westerwelle, Germany’s foreign minister, put forward the idea of a meeting to discuss a convention but that it was opposed by a majority of those present.
More could become clear on the direction that the EU is taking at the summit of EU member state leaders on 18-19 October when Herman Van Rompuy, the president of the European Council, will deliver his interim plan for political, fiscal and banking union.
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