Thursday

27th Jul 2017

Merkel and Cameron disagree on EU treaty change

  • Angela Merkel received David Cameron in Berlin (Photo: Valentina Pop)

UK Prime Minister David Cameron on Friday (21 May) rejected the the idea of a new EU treaty change to accommodate German chancellor Angela Merkel's vision of stronger economic co-ordination in the EU.

"There is no question of agreeing to a treaty that transfers powers from Westminster to Brussels. Britain is obviously not in the eurozone and is not going to be joining, so it wouldn't agree to any treaty that drew us further into the euro area," Mr Cameron said on Friday (21 May) during a joint press conference with Ms Merkel in Berlin.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now and get 40% off for an annual subscription. Sale ends soon.

  1. €90 per year. Use discount code EUOBS40%
  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.

The German leader for her part insisted that any treaty change would not mean giving more powers to Brussels.

A treaty change would require a referendum in Britain and is likely to result in a No vote.

Mr Cameron insisted, however, that new government in London wanted Britain to be a "positive player in Europe" and had every interest in the eurozone being stable.

While stressing the need to enhance the "stability culture" of the euro-countries, Ms Merkel did not rule out a treaty change, but said this would have to be agreed at a later point in time.

"Germany tabled some ideas where a treaty change plays a certain role, but let me tell you we're at the beginning, it's very early days as regards to the working group [a taskforce led by EU council president Herman Van Rompuy] and there is no agreement yet in the group about what needs to be done," she said.

Berlin's insistence on a treaty change stems from its legal tradition and potential constitutional challenges to measures taken outside the EU treaty, such as the rescue package for the eurozone, which the Bundestag passed on Friday.

But the British premier said that such a treaty change would require unanimity of all 27 EU states, not just the 16 countries in the euro area, in which case the UK would make use of its veto right.

The two leaders did agree on the need to curb deficits across the EU, while Ms Merkel stressed the "positive role" the UK can play in improving the image of the EU as a prosperous area, not one of stagnation and economic slump.

In Germany's view, sustainable economic growth, innovation and research are the way forward and here it sees a role for the so-called economic governance which the French government is pushing for the euro area.

But Berlin believes that economic policy co-ordination should take place among all 27 EU member states, otherwise the eurozone would become too "inward looking" and would exclude countries such as Sweden and Poland.

Also, there is no "Eurogroup parliament", as opposed to the EU legislature which is elected from all 27 member states, the Germans point out.

Cameron faces tricky EU vote on Monday

British Prime Minister David Cameron has so far managed to keep his party’s tortured relationship with the EU in the background but a motion for EU referendum on Monday looks set to change this.

Greece looking at bond market return

Greece could issue 3-year bonds as early as this week, for the first time in three years, amid mixed signs from its creditors and rating agencies.

Greece to get €7.7bn loan next week

The ESM, the eurozone emergency fund, agreed on Friday to unblock a new tranche of aid as part of the bailout programme agreed upon in 2015.

News in Brief

  1. Werner Hoyer re-appointed as EU investment bank chief
  2. Spanish PM denies knowledge of party corruption
  3. France 'routinely' abuses migrants, says NGO
  4. Swedish government rocked by data scandal
  5. Member states relocate 3,000 migrants in June
  6. Top EU jurist says Malta's finch-trapping against EU law
  7. EU judges rule to keep Hamas funds frozen
  8. EU court rejects passenger data deal with Canada

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. EU2017EELocal Leaders Push for Local and Regional Targets to Address Climate Change
  2. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceMore Women Than Men Have Died From Heart Disease in Past 30 Years
  3. European Jewish CongressJean-Marie Le Pen Faces Trial for Oven Comments About Jewish Singer
  4. ACCAAnnounces Belt & Road Research at Shanghai Conference
  5. ECPAFood waste in the field can double without crop protection. #WithOrWithout #pesticides
  6. EU2017EEEstonia Allocates €1 Million to Alleviate Migratory Pressure From Libya in Italy
  7. Dialogue PlatformFethullah Gulen's Message on the Anniversary of the Coup Attempt in Turkey
  8. Martens CentreWeeding out Fake News: An Approach to Social Media Regulation
  9. European Jewish CongressEJC Concerned by Normalisation of Antisemitic Tropes in Hungary
  10. Counter BalanceOut for Summer Episode 1: How the EIB Sweeps a Development Fiasco Under the Rug
  11. CESICESI to Participate in Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee on Postal Services
  12. ILGA-EuropeMalta Keeps on Rocking: Marriage Equality on Its Way

Latest News

  1. Insults fly after EU ultimatum to Poland
  2. UK requests EU migration study, 13 months after Brexit vote
  3. EU defends airline data-sharing after court ruling
  4. Stop blaming Trump for Poland’s democratic crisis
  5. EU-US scrap on Russia sanctions gets worse
  6. Czechs, Hungarians, and Poles have one month to start taking migrants
  7. EU Commission sets red lines for Poland on Article 7
  8. Court told to 'dismiss' case against EU migrant quotas