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Wulff argues for deepening of European integration

German President Christian Wulff, in Slovakia for a two-day visit, said that Slovaks earned their accession to the eurozone with their economic and financial reforms, and their tight budgetary discipline. He made the comments during a ceremonial dinner held in Bratislava on September 26, the TASR newswire reported.

German President Christian Wulff, in Slovakia for a two-day visit, said that Slovaks earned their accession to the eurozone with their economic and financial reforms, and their tight budgetary discipline. He made the comments during a ceremonial dinner held in Bratislava on September 26, the TASR newswire reported.

Wulff conceded that it may be difficult for some Slovaks to understand why they should provide financial support to countries with higher incomes per capita, such as Greece, Ireland or Portugal.

“At the same time, it is true that the effects of the debt crisis concern all of us,” Wulff said, as quoted by TASR, adding that no country will be able to tackle this challenge on its own and that nobody can avoid it.

Wulff also stressed that Slovakia and Germany should continue to strengthen the foundations of the European Union.

“Only if we are part of a strong community of 500 million people will the world listen to us,” stressed the German president, as quoted by TASR. “The integration process in Europe must continue because the European project determines the future of every single European nation.”

Wulff pointed to the fact that both Slovakia and Germany supported Croatia in its efforts to join the EU, a process that will be completed in 2013 with full membership. He expressed the hope that other countries of the western Balkans will soon follow. He said he believed that Slovakia should also offer to share the experience that it gained from its transformation period to the countries of the Eastern Partnership, which includes Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.

He also praised Slovakia as one of the most competitive countries in central and eastern Europe.

“The fact that German companies provide almost 90,000 jobs in Slovakia today is due to another reason – that many Slovaks have excellent German skills,” Wulff said, as quoted by TASR. “This is a real asset for your country.”

Source: TASR

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
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