German business steps up call for reform

21st August 2007, Comments 0 comments

21 August 2007, Berlin (dpa) - While German coalition leaders prepared for a major conference on government strategy this week, the nation's businesses called on Chancellor Angela Merkel's government to step up its drive for economic reform.

21 August 2007

Berlin (dpa) - While German coalition leaders prepared for a major conference on government strategy this week, the nation's businesses called on Chancellor Angela Merkel's government to step up its drive for economic reform.

Speaking ahead of the two-day coalition conference, Dieter Hundt, the head of Germany's powerful employers' federation (BDA), said the government should use the nation's present economic pickup to press on with a much-needed reform agenda.

"The current economic upswing does not, however, have its own dynamics," said Hundt.

"German business now expects during the second half of the (coalition's) term in office for the government to press on with economic oriented and intensive reform efforts," he said.

Despite the high opinion poll ratings enjoyed by Merkel and her success on the international stage, the chancellor's so-called grand coalition has come under fire from both economists and business leaders for the modest reforms it has introduced since coming to power in 2005.

Merkel's conservative Christian Democrat-led political bloc was forced to form a coalition government with its political rivals, the Social Democrats (SDP) after an inconclusive national election.

The leaders of both Merkel's bloc and the SDP are to meet on Thursday and Friday for a government conference on policy during the second part of its term.

"I appeal strongly to the government to used the economic tail wind to launch further intensive reforms," said Hundt.

DPA

Subject: German news

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