German minister has reservations about financial tax

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German Economy Minister Philipp Roesler has reservations about the idea of a financial transactions tax mooted by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Roesler said Friday in an interview.

"We would only back a tax on financial transactions if it is applied in all 27 countries of the European Union," Philipp Roesler told the regional daily Stuttgarter Zeitung.

The "we" that Roesler referred to was the Free Democratic Party (FDP) that he heads and which is a junior coalition partner to Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU).

Roesler stressed that "the eurozone must not be placed at a disadvantage with respect to its EU partners," several of which, most notably Britain, have said they would not implement such a tax.

Roesler insisted that there was no disagreement between himself and Merkel on the issue.

Sarkozy, who met with Merkel this week in Paris, told media later that "German and French finance ministers will put a joint proposition for a tax on financial transactions on the table of European institutions from next month."

© 2011 AFP

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