Wednesday

14th Nov 2018

Anti-euro party officially launched in Germany

  • Some 1,500 delegates voted the party into existence (Photo: Valentina Pop)

A new party calling for the dissolution of the eurozone held its founding congress in Berlin on Sunday (14 April), hoping to capitalise on disillusioned voters in the September elections.

Around 1,500 delegates gathered early Sunday morning in Hotel Intercontintental in former West Berlin - so many that the organisers had to book an extra conference room.

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 'Alternatives' already have stickers and tshirts ready for the September elections (Photo: Valentina Pop)

All the participants believe that the euro is a doomed project that should be ended soon for the benefit of all the single currency countries.

"We take pride in being called populists. There is something like a free speech police here in Germany saying there is no alternative to the euro. We are the alternative now, Alternative for Germany," Konrad Adam, an ex-journalist and co-founder of the new party said in the opening speech, often interrupted by standing ovations.

They reject the anti-European label. But the reaction of the crowded room at a certain point was revealing. A British and US diplomat invited to the meeting were greeted with applause. An EU commission representative was booed.

Unlike other EU countries, Germany's openly anti-European parties have so far led a marginalised political existence. And no party so far has openly advocated for the dissolution of the euro, apart from the neo-Nazi NPD which staged a mini protest outside the hotel saying they are the "real" anti-euro party.

The Alternative for Germany hopes to capitalise on recent polls showing 17 percent of voters could imagine opting for a party that favours exiting the euro.

But start-up parties have a harder time in Germany than elsewhere, especially when they are single-issue.

The Pirate Party calling for free and deregulated Internet made it into regional parliaments, but internal quarrels and a lack other political ideas have eroded their support base and they are unlikely to make it into the Bundestag.

Christian Jacken, a 36-year old former Pirate party official present at the Alternative for Germany congress told this website he is interested in joining the new party because of its ideas.

"I am pro-European, but I am against a centralised state and the constant breach of EU treaties - like the no-bailout clause," he said, with the constitutional court in Germany and the EU's own top court finding that the treaties were not breached by the setting up of a eurozone bailout fund.

In order to make it into the Bundestag in the 22 September elections, Alternative for Germany needs to receive at least five percent of the total votes. Pollsters see this as unlikely, but the party could add to the troubles of the Liberals, Angela Chancellor Merkel's current coalition partners, who are stuck at four percent in the polls.

According to the latest political barometer published by ZDF broadcaster on Friday, Merkel's Christian Democrats gained two points and lead with 42 percent, while the Social Democrats lost another two points and are down to 27 percent. The Greens are stable at 14 percent, the leftist Linke at six percent.

Asked if they would still want Merkel as chancellor, 63 percent of voters said yes, while her Social-Democratic challenger Peer Steinbrueck only convinced 27 percent, down two points compared to last month.

If Germany were to exit the euro, 66 percent think it would be "rather bad" for Germany, while 26 percent say it would be a positive step. Seventeen percent said they would vote for a party favouring leaving the single currency.

New anti-euro party forms in Germany

A new party in favour of returning to the Deutsche Mark is taking shape in Germany. But most Germans still want to keep the euro.

Focus

German eurosceptics on the rise ahead of EU elections

Anti-euro and anti-immigrant sentiment is shaping the EU election campaign in Germany, with a newcomer party that promises an "alternative" to the single currency set to enter the European Parliament.

Merkel calls for 'real, true' EU army

Angela Merkel's much-anticipated speech to the European Parliament was brief and to the point. Her message: Europe is alone in the world, the EU should be more united on defence, but not on the economy.

EU action on Hungary and Poland drowns in procedure

EU ministers' discussion on how to address rule of law issues in Poland and Hungary gets stuck on procedural issues, while Viktor Orban's government claims it is a target of the Brussels elite because of its anti-migration stance.

News in Brief

  1. Draft Brexit deal on London cabinet agenda on Wednesday
  2. EU proposes no visa for UK citizens after Brexit
  3. EU parliament 'deeply concerned' on Romania judiciary
  4. Macedonia's ex-PM flees to Hungary, seeks asylum
  5. Cyprus opens first new border crossings in eight years
  6. Putin's Austrian dance partner cancels Moscow visit
  7. Political deadlock over Sweden Democrat influence
  8. Court: Catalan referendum organisers must repay costs

Opinion

On Armistice Day, EU is still best gift we can give our children

While young people fought each other in 1918, young people in 2018 travel to study together under the Erasmus programme. But there is a risk of limiting our commemoration to representing the past through just speeches, museum exhibits and visits.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSTheresa May: “We will not be turning our backs on the Nordic region”
  2. International Partnership for Human RightsOpen letter to Emmanuel Macron ahead of Uzbek president's visit
  3. International Partnership for Human RightsRaising key human rights concerns during visit of Turkmenistan's foreign minister
  4. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSState of the Nordic Region presented in Brussels
  5. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSThe vital bioeconomy. New issue of “Sustainable Growth the Nordic Way” out now
  6. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSThe Nordic gender effect goes international
  7. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSPaula Lehtomaki from Finland elected as the Council's first female Secretary General
  8. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSNordic design sets the stage at COP24, running a competition for sustainable chairs.
  9. Counter BalanceIn Kenya, a motorway funded by the European Investment Bank runs over roadside dwellers
  10. ACCACompany Law Package: Making the Best of Digital and Cross Border Mobility,
  11. International Partnership for Human RightsCivil Society Worried About Shortcomings in EU-Kyrgyzstan Human Rights Dialogue
  12. UNESDAThe European Soft Drinks Industry Supports over 1.7 Million Jobs

Latest News

  1. Macron's 'European army': why is everyone talking about it?
  2. Merkel calls for 'real, true' EU army
  3. Italy defiant on budget on eve of EU deadline
  4. EU action on Hungary and Poland drowns in procedure
  5. EU unable to fully trace €1bn spent on refugees in Turkey
  6. Romanian leaders trade jibes over upcoming EU presidency
  7. EU warns Romania not to abuse GDPR against press
  8. EU 'Magnitsky Act' must bear its proper name

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Mission of China to the EUJointly Building Belt and Road Initiative Leads to a Better Future for All
  2. International Partnership for Human RightsCivil society asks PACE to appoint Rapporteur to probe issue of political prisoners in Azerbaijan
  3. ACCASocial Mobility – How Can We Increase Opportunities Through Training and Education?
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersEnergy Solutions for a Greener Tomorrow
  5. UNICEFWhat Kind of Europe Do Children Want? Unicef & Eurochild Launch Survey on the Europe Kids Want
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Countries Take a Stand for Climate-Smart Energy Solutions
  7. Mission of China to the EUChina: Work Together for a Better Globalisation
  8. Nordic Council of MinistersNordics Could Be First Carbon-Negative Region in World
  9. European Federation of Allergy and AirwaysLife Is Possible for Patients with Severe Asthma
  10. PKEE - Polish Energy AssociationCommon-Sense Approach Needed for EU Energy Reform
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Region to Lead in Developing and Rolling Out 5G Network
  12. Mission of China to the EUChina-EU Economic and Trade Relations Enjoy a Bright Future

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us