April 19, 2018 / 12:20 PM / 5 months ago

Compromise needed to achieve European reforms, Merkel says

BERLIN (Reuters) - European Union member states will need to show a willingness to compromise if progress on reforms is to be made, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday at a joint news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron.

With Macron visiting the German capital to discuss his vision for a streamlined and more integrated EU, Merkel said the two had agreed to take important decisions to “revive” Europe ahead of the June council of EU leaders.

“We need debates, open debates, and in the end we also need the ability to compromise,” Merkel told reporters. “That is the world in which we want to live and work, and only in this way will we be an important factor in a big world where other states play a central role.”

Among the key tasks she mentioned was a European common asylum system, which she said was essential to preserving freedom of movement between EU member states. Progress was also needed towards a banking union, she said, adding she was optimistic about this.

Reporting by Thomas Escritt; Editing by Paul Carrel

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