Amsterdam: Netherlands Prime Minister (PM) Mark Rutte warned that Germany and France should not try to force their ambitious plans about improvements in the European Union (EU) on the other member countries against their will. By issuing this warning just ahead of the meeting of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron, he has given indications that everything is not fine in the EU.
French President Macron is making efforts to bring about major reforms in the EU and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has expressed support for his plans. The plan includes issues for unification of Europe like concept of ‘United States of Europe’, increase in the security and defence expenditure, helping the European countries facing difficulties. Netherlands’ PM Mark Rutte has said that although the Union does need reforms, it should not assume that Netherlands and other member countries will nod along to the German-French proposals.
‘There are free travel permissions for the EU countries and the new German government is free to meet the French government any time. But this does not mean that Netherlands or any other member countries will like and happily permit every German and French action,’ Netherlands PM lashed out at the unilateral policies of France and Germany.
A few years ago, when the EU was trapped under the burden of additional loans, ‘European Stability Mechanism’, an agency to help the member countries was formed. However, Germany and France are insistent to make this a permanent agency and Netherlands and other countries have opposed the move. But to make the ‘European Stability Mechanism’ a permanent entity some changes are necessary in the ‘European Agreement’ and the member countries lack the will to do so, pointed the Netherlands PM.
Netherlands opposed the French President’s proposal for reforms in the Monetary Union agency. Rutte clarified that policy improvements and financial aid to countries like France and Italy are more important. At the same time, he warned that the EU does not need a ‘European Finance Minister’. Netherlands has also opposed the proposal of additional financial burden on certain countries in view of ‘Brexit’ and ‘Eurozone Budget’.
Meanwhile, German Chancellor Angela Merkel met the French President Macron in the French capital, Paris. According to the sources, it was decided in the meeting that the outline of the reforms in the EU shall be presented in the meeting to be held in June.