Thursday

22nd Aug 2019

Merkel's party calls for eurozone exit clause

  • Merkel's CDU party wants 'permanent commissioners' in charge of budget sinners (Photo: s_zeimke)

With Germany pushing for a change to the EU treaty in order to toughen up economic governance, an EU resolution agreed Monday (14 November) by Chancellor Angela Merkel's CDU party gives an idea of Berlin's thinking on the matter.

The 23-page resolution says an EU convention - a multi-layered body required for profound treaty change - with a "clearly defined mandate" should be called.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

The "goals" of treaty change discussion should be "automatic sanctions" within the stability and growth pact, with misbehaving member states liable to be taken to the European Court of Justice.

Meanwhile eurozone countries that are "permanently unwillingly or unable" to hold to the rules of the single currency should "voluntarily" be able to exit the eurozone.

Currently there are no rules on exiting the eurozone - an option first publicly aired when Greece threatened to have a referendum on its second bailout package - only for leaving the EU itself.

But before it comes to this step, however, the resolution suggests that states that get themselves into debt would be assigned a "budget commissioner" who would oversee public spending and restructuring measures. This person should have "powers to act" if the state failed to fulfil it duties.

Direct election of commission president

German centre-right politicians also suggest that the European Commission President should in future be directly elected by EU voters so that "political union gets a face."

Current rules say the president must be chosen in light of the European elections, meaning the person should come from the political family that gets the most votes.

But several have argued that agreeing a candidate beforehand would politicise a process that has long been seen as hollow democracy, with disinterested and ever fewer voters traipsing to European urns every five years.

This same political union, says the non-binding CDU resolution, should have a "democratic bicameral" parliamentary system, with the European Parliament representing citizens and the council of minister representing member states. Both chambers should have the right to initiate legislation.

Meanwhile, seats in the EU assembly should be distributed in a way that more strongly reflects national populations, with Germany the most populous EU member state.

Although the resolution is not binding, its gives a clear indication of the European path favoured by Germany's ruling party.

This is likely to strongly influence the debate in Brussels with EU council president Herman Van Rompuy due to president ideas on further EU economic integration - including those that involve treaty change - in early December.

Spectre of fresh EU treaty returns to haunt ‘incomplete’ Europe

So exhausted were they by the struggle by the time the soap opera ended, European leaders then swore it would be very long indeed, perhaps a generation, before the EU treaties would be opened again. But now, in the last few days, as Europe’s economy and the single currency stand on the precipice, these same leaders have begun to eat their words.

Merkel: eurozone crisis will take 'years' to solve

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has dismissed talk that next week's summit will bring about a definitive solution to the eurozone crisis, saying it will take years to overcome the single currency's problems.

Britain wants labour law opt-out in return for treaty change

British Prime Minister David Cameron has agreed to have a "constructive" look at an upcoming treaty change German Chancellor Angela Merkel is pushing for, but in return, he wants a reinforced British opt-out from EU labour laws.

Investigation

The EU committee's great 'per diem' charade

Around 30 members of European Economic Social Committee, who live and work primarily in Brussels or nearby, have claimed €1.47m in a 'daily subsistence' allowance from European taxpayers to cover accommodation, food and local transport for meetings held in Brussels.

Exclusive

Selmayr did not keep formal records of lobby meetings

The German former secretary-general of the European Commission held some 21 meetings which were registered in the lobby register. But no documents appeared to exist summarising what was said.

Magazine

The changing of the guards in the EU in 2019

The four most powerful EU institutions - Commission, Parliament, Council and Central Bank will all have new leaders in the coming ten months. Here is an overview.

Magazine

Explained: What is the European Parliament?

While domestic political parties often use the European Parliament as a dumping ground for unwanted politicians - and a majority of citizens don't bother to vote - the parliament, over the years, has become a dominant force in the EU.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNESDAUNESDA reduces added sugars 11.9% between 2015-2017
  2. International Partnership for Human RightsEU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue: EU to raise key fundamental rights issues
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersNo evidence that social media are harmful to young people
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersCanada to host the joint Nordic cultural initiative 2021
  5. Vote for the EU Sutainable Energy AwardsCast your vote for your favourite EUSEW Award finalist. You choose the winner of 2019 Citizen’s Award.
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersEducation gets refugees into work
  7. Counter BalanceSign the petition to help reform the EU’s Bank
  8. UNICEFChild rights organisations encourage candidates for EU elections to become Child Rights Champions
  9. UNESDAUNESDA Outlines 2019-2024 Aspirations: Sustainability, Responsibility, Competitiveness
  10. Counter BalanceRecord citizens’ input to EU bank’s consultation calls on EIB to abandon fossil fuels
  11. International Partnership for Human RightsAnnual EU-Turkmenistan Human Rights Dialogue takes place in Ashgabat
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersNew campaign: spot, capture and share Traces of North

Latest News

  1. Open Arms may face fine in Spain 
  2. Belgium's EU commission hopeful in free press row
  3. Conte turns on Salvini, as Italy prepares for change
  4. Nordic-German climate action signals broader alliance
  5. The EU committee's great 'per diem' charade
  6. Spain calls for legal action against Italy on migrants
  7. Trump to meet Greenland leader in Denmark
  8. Irish border plan is 'anti-democratic', Johnson tells EU

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us