Monday

16th Oct 2017

Merkel and Sarkozy call for global 'economic security' council

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicholas Sarkozy have warned the US not to block attempts to build an international financial regulator, calling for a new economic body similar to the UN's Security Council.

"I've always in my political life been a supporter of a close alliance with the United States but let's be clear: in the 21st century, a single nation can no longer say what we must do or what we must think," said Mr Sarkozy at an international symposium in Paris on Thursday (8 January), shortly before US president-elect Barack Obama enters office.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • Mr Sarkozy and Ms Merkel say capitalism needs new global oversight (Photo: The Council of the European Union)

The French leader had originally called the Paris meeting - "New World, New Capitalism" - a global "summit," but limited his ambitions after few international leaders deigned to attend.

"We'll take our decisions on 2 April in London," he went on, referring to an upcoming meeting of the G20. "Perhaps the United States will join us in this change."

Ms Merkel, also in attendance at the conference, echoed the French president's warning to Washington.

"No country can act alone in this day and age, not even the United States, however powerful they may be," she said, Deutsche Welle reports.

She said that hopes that out of the economic crisis, governments can construct a new architecture for managing global capitalism.

"Our response [to the economic crisis] must be more than a few rules," she said. "The crisis is an opportunity to create an international architecture of institutions."

Global economic charter

The chancellor said the world needs an "economic council" in the United Nations as well as the existing body that deals with security matters.

"It is possible that alongside the [UN] Security Council, we could also have an economic council," she said, adding that alongside the UN Charter, an economic sustainability charter "for a long-term reasonable economy" should be drafted establishing rules for global financial governance.

"Our response must be more than a few rules," she added. "The crisis is an opportunity to create an international architecture of institutions."

The centre-right German leader also warned businesses there was no returning to laissez-faire approaches by governments once the crisis has passed.

"Once everything is going better, the financial markets will tell us: 'you politicians don't need to get involved because everything is working again'," she said, according to the Guardian. "I will stay firm, we must not repeat the mistakes of the past."

Mr Sarkozy warned that capitalism could collapse if it is not restructured. "Either we re-found capitalism or we destroy it," he said. "Purely financial capitalism has perverted the logic of capitalism ...it is amoral. It is a system where the logic of the market excuses everything."

Former UK prime minister Tony Blair, a co-sponsor of the symposium, echoed the European leaders: "what is unavoidable in the longer term is a recasting of the system of international supervision."

"We have mid-20th-century international institutions governing a 21st century world," he added. "The reform of the IMF, the World Bank, the financial regulatory system [is] long overdue."

The meeting came as Germany announced it is to inject a further €10 billion into Commerzbank, in return for a 25 percent stake in the bank, while France offered another €10.5 billion for its six main banks.

Analysis

Juncker's euro-push could risk unity, warns eastern flank

The EU Commission chief hopes that as Emmanuel Macron pushes for euro area countries to integrate further creating a multi-speed Europe, central European members will be more inclined to join the single currency. Are they?

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  2. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  3. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  4. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  5. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe
  6. CECEE-Privacy Regulation – Hands off M2M Communication!
  7. ILGA-EuropeHealth4LGBTI: Reducing Health Inequalities Experienced by LGBTI People
  8. EU2017EEEHealth: A Tool for More Equal Health
  9. Mission of China to the EUChina-EU Tourism a Key Driver for Job Creation and Enhanced Competitiveness
  10. CECENon-Harmonised Homologation of Mobile Machinery Costs € 90 Million per Year
  11. ILGA-EuropeMass Detention of Azeri LGBTI People - the LGBTI Community Urgently Needs Your Support
  12. European Free AllianceCatalans Have Won the Right to Have an Independent State

Latest News

  1. Malta shocked after car bomb kills crusading journalist
  2. Spanish and Catalan leaders continue stand-off
  3. May pleads for more as EU makes Brexit gesture
  4. EU united in backing Iran deal, after Trump criticisms
  5. 'Think of the patients!' cry warring EMA-host cities
  6. In Iceland: Europe woos Arctic allies
  7. Austrian voters reject liberal pro-EU status quo
  8. Turkey urges EU not to break off ties