German minister attacks 'nebulous' Van Rompuy debt strategy

13th September 2010, Comments 0 comments

Germany slammed European Union President Herman Van Rompuy on Monday for advancing "nebulous" ideas on how to strengthen cross-border economic governance.

"We hope that President Van Rompuy will soon present concrete propositions," said Werner Hoyer, deputy foreign minister.

"This dossier is too important to be treated on the basis of nebulous texts," he said, accusing Van Rompuy of having "chosen a way of working which sets imprecise foundations for debate."

Van Rompuy leads a "task force" charged by national leaders in the spring with suggesting workable ways to penalise countries that breach set limits on debts and deficits and will present an "oral" report at a summit on Thursday in Brussels.

The drive originated at the height of the Greek debt crisis but has slipped down the agenda for some countries who see new threats to European economic recovery as little incentive to agree tough sanctions including the mooted loss of voting rights favoured by Germany or ultimately even financial penalties.

Talks on how to radically re-draw the rules proved beyond finance ministers when they met last week, with Slovakia's Ivan Miklos warning of "too many voices, too may views," and a senior diplomat saying the discussions were "stuck."

© 2010 AFP

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