End EU’s ‘re­li­gious war’ over debt, says Macron

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Europe must end its “re­li­gious war” over debt, French Econ­omy Min­is­ter Em­manuel Macron said. Macron out­lined his ap­proach to the euro area’s fi­nan­cial woes at a con­fer­ence of Ger­man diplo­mats yesterday, pit­ting what he termed debt-scold­ing Calvin­ists against overindul­gent Catholics. The two fac­tions mir­ror the per­ceived rough di­vide be­tween Ger­man-led bud­get dis­ci­plinar­i­ans in the north and Europe’s more in­debted Mediter­ranean south. Speak­ing in Ber­lin, Macron at first nee­dled the Calvin­ists with an ar­tic­u­la­tion of a rigid view of debt. “Some peo­ple, some mem­ber-states, failed,” Macron said in English. “They didn’t re­spect their com­mit­ments. They have to pay it till the end of their life.” On the op­po­site end are the Catholics, “def­i­nitely France is on this side,” with an ar­guably more san­guine per­spec­tive on profli­gacy, Macron said. “We failed, but we go to church, we ex­plain the sit­u­a­tion and we can start another week the day af­ter,” he said. The 21st-cen­tury ver­sion of the re­li­gious schism comes a month af­ter Ger­man-backed aus­ter­ity in the latest Greek cri­sis pre­vailed over calls by France and like­minded euro-area mem­ber states to ease off on the pol­icy. “Prob­a­bly, we have to find the bal­ance be­tween these two ap­proaches,” Macron said in the speech, which was punc­tu­ated by calls for Franco-Ger­man unity, at times in Ger­man.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Greece

© PressReader. All rights reserved.