Merkel says must tackle bottlenecks before boosting investment

18 July, 2017, 01:21 | Author: Valerie Burke
  • Merkel could be gone in September if Schulz emulates Corbyn

Asked if she could guarantee that she would serve a full four years, Merkel replied that she had made clear she plans to do so and has "the firm intention to do exactly what I told people".

The German leader also defended her fiscal policy after Social Democratic leader Martin Schulz laid out his party's "Future Plan", including a pledge to spend budget surplus funds on public investment.

Merkel's comments, made in a speech in the Baltic Sea resort town of Zingst two months before a federal election, underline her personal determination to deepen European integration if she is re-elected for a fourth term.

Asked in a television interview by ARD public broadcaster about her investment plans and Schulz's criticism, Merkel said: "We now can not spend the money that we have".

"We now can not spend the money that we have", Merkel told ARD public broadcaster in an interview, pointing to planning and capacity bottlenecks in the construction industry as well as at the level of regional authorities. "I don't see the main problem as the question of whether there should be more money - you can and you must do that - but rather in accelerating planning". He had signaled in an interview that Germany must help resolve the imbalance by promoting domestic demand through increased spending. Merkel insisted Sunday she won't accept it.

Polls ahead of the September election show Merkel in a position of strength.

"Whoever disrupts global supply chains, or even breaks them, will eventually harm all those involved", Merkel said.

The Christian Social Union - the arch-conservative Bavarian sister party of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats, on Monday agreed on its election manifesto, in which it calls for a cap on the number of refugees entering Germany.

Germany's current-account surplus has been on the receiving end of persistent criticism, including most recently from the International Monetary Fund and the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump.

Schulz, whose SPD pulled almost even with Merkel's faction in surveys after his surprise nomination in January, has struggled to regain that initial momentum.

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