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Merkel and Sarkozy want to strengthen confidence in the euro

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2011-01-18_Euro_ddp BRUSSELS (Dow Jones) – Germany and France want to create a competitiveness pact to coordinate economic policy a solid foundation for the euro. (Photo: Reuters)

Germany and France are determined that 2011 will be the year of the new confidence for the euro, Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a joint press statement with French President Nicolas Sarkozy on the sidelines of the EU summit in Brussels. Both sides wanted to explain their ideas to its EU partners over lunch.

Germany and France did not adopt the euro as the currency defense, but make clear "that the euro is a political project," said Merkel. In addition to emergency mechanism and financial stability Facility this meant closer economic cooperation to the common competitiveness increase. Yardstick must in each case the be a member state, meets the conditions best. Your goal is that we can prove within a year of very specific points that we take seriously and are serious about such a pact, said the Chancellor.

Sarkozy said France would go along with Germany a new step and provide a structural response by the economic policy will become more integrated with the aim of strengthening the competitiveness of economies.

The President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, is now mandated by the Member States of the euro area, drawing up such a Wettbwerbsfähigkeitspakt in consultation with them and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso. The leaders of non-euro countries will be involved in the process. Decisions will be taken at the spring summit in March. All observers should be understood throughout the world, then, that the European economies move towards convergence, "said the French president.

The Euro States also confirm in a joint statement that they want to communicate the March summit to strengthen the support fund EFSF and on the design of a permanent crisis mechanism (ESM). Even then, the modalities, such as interest rate and maturity of loans for Greece and Ireland are discussed. Commission and the ECB will also present an evaluation of the € States has taken so far consolidation steps.