German finance minister pushes for EU-wide unemployment scheme

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The intention, according to the working paper, is to prevent member states from spiralling into debt as they try to cope with high unemployment levels, and to “strengthen solidarity between member states”.

But there is widespread opposition in Germany to anything that could be considered a “transfer union”, in which Germans would be forced to pay for what they see as the failure of weaker economies.

France’s Emmanuel Macron is trying to force through sweeping Eurozone reform and Mr Scholz has pushed for the unemployment scheme to be included.

The German finance minister is desperate for a policy success he can hold up as evidence his centre-Left Social Democratic Party (SPD) is able to puruse its agenda as Mrs Merkel’s junior coalition partner.

The SPD suffered its worst ever regional election results last weekend and has been plummetting in the national polls, and there are growing calls within the party to leave the coalition.

But so far the plans have been blocked by Mrs Merkel’s party, which controls the economy ministry and is wary of anything voters will see as Germany paying for other EU states.





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