Euro 'at stake' in Ireland bailout: German minister

23rd November 2010, Comments 0 comments

Germany's finance minister said Tuesday the fate of the shared European currency was at stake in the proposed bailout of debt-stricken Ireland.

Speaking in the German parliament, Wolfgang Schaeuble said: "It's our common currency that's at stake."

Germany, Europe's biggest economy, must take responsibility "otherwise there will be untold economic and social consequences for our country," the minister added.

Ireland applied for help on Sunday from the European Union and International Monetary Fund to help it cope with a gaping budget deficit and a deeply troubled banking system.

While the amount of the package has yet to be revealed, European diplomats have said it could come to around 90 billion euros (120 billion dollars).

The German press on Tuesday stressed how important it was for Germany to step in, for its own interests.

"German investors have a good 100 billion euros lying in Ireland and an Irish bankruptcy would send shockwaves," the Suedeutsche Zeitung said.

Meanwhile, the Berliner Zeitung wrote in an editorial: "The money of German savers and insurers is being saved in Ireland.

"Let's finally have a debate about common economic governance and economic and fiscal policy before it's too late."

© 2010 AFP

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