Nicolas Sarkozy, France’s president, said on Monday (9 January) that he would present plans for a financial transaction tax for France by the end of this month, in the hope of spurring other European Union member states to do the same.
Sarkozy, speaking after talks in Berlin with Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor, said he wanted France to take the lead in applying the European Commission’s proposal for a financial transaction tax.
“If we don’t set a good example, it won’t happen,” said Sarkozy, who is determined to implement the plan before presidential elections on 22 April. “We believe that this will set in motion a dynamic within the eurozone which will give all member states an opportunity to implement this tax.”
Merkel said that she favoured the tax being introduced by all eurozone member states, adding that Germany “wanted to wait” until finance ministers from EU member states draft a plan, which she hopes will be completed by March.
The meeting in Berlin was the first in another intensive series of talks in the lead-up to the next summit of all 27 leaders in Brussels on 30 January. Mario Monti, Italy’s prime minister, met Merkel in Berlin yesterday (11 January) and Monti hosts Merkel and Sarkozy in Rome on 20 January.
Finance ministers from eurozone member states meet on 23 January, followed by all 27 finance ministers the following day.
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