CRISIS TALKS BETWEEN the leaders of Europe’s largest economies appear to have stalled amid fears for the prospect of reaching a deal on the region’s debt crisis.
French president Nicolas Sarkozy flew to Frankfurt last night – leaving the Paris clinic where his wife Carla Bruni was giving birth to their first child – for talks with German chancellor Angela Merkel.
Earlier in the day he had told French parliamentarians that a dispute between the two countries was holding up negotiations on the debt crisis, Reuters reports.
However, the talks appeared to produce no results, with neither leader making any statement to reporters afterwards. When euro group president Jean-Claude Juncker was asked whether any agreement had been reached, he said “We will continue to meet Saturday and Sunday,” AGI News reports.
It’s believed Merkel and Sarkozy are at odds over the proposed role of the European Financial Stability Fund, with France arguing that it should essentially function like a bank.
European leaders will meet on Sunday in an attempt to reach a deal on the debt crisis, which has already sparked violent protests in Greece and has been causing market jitters for several weeks.
According to the Guardian, one key element of the deal is that the EFSF – which has supported Ireland as well as other EU countries – should be expanded from its current size of €440billion to around €2trillion.