Franco-German Competitiveness Pact


The Franco-German Competitiveness Pact has set out various economic and political goals.  With regard to the economic situation, it was promised that decisions would be reached at the meeting in March.  Issues discussed included:  energy, innovation, Egypt and the Mediterranean region, as well as the “long term structural challenges.”  President Herman Van Rompuy addressed the economic situation but it’s unclear whether he covered the plans of France and Germany.  He claimed the Council didn’t make any specific proposals but there were some suggestions of how to proceed. 


As well, it is hoped that stronger economic coordination, leading to greater competitiveness can be achieved while developing common policies.  There does not have to be unity on everything, but there should be a sense that the countries are heading in the same direction.


Regarding politics, a consultation between all heads of the Eurozone and State  heads was undertaken to “identify concrete ways forward in line with the Treaty.  Then these individuals will get together to discuss findings.


Six priorities were drawn up in Berlin: elimination of wage indexation systems; consensus on mutual recognition of education qualifications; establishment of database to assess corporate tax for all; pension system adjustment;  the “establishment of a national crisis management regime for banks and new legal measures to force countries to commit to tough fiscal policies through a ‘debt alert mechanism.’”
Ultimately each country will be tested against various economic indicators to analyze the progress made which will then be “verified by the European Commission.”


 

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