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Merkel and Radičová discuss vote on EFSF and ESM

Prime Minister Iveta Radičová discussed ratification of the changes in the European bailout mechanisms with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during her visit to the two-day summit of the Eastern Partnership in Warsaw on September 29-30, the Sme daily reported, writing that there is hope of persuading the Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) party to change its attitude towards approval of the changes in the European Financial Stability Fund (EFSF) and the establishment of permanent European Stability Mechanism (ESM).

Prime Minister Iveta Radičová discussed ratification of the changes in the European bailout mechanisms with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during her visit to the two-day summit of the Eastern Partnership in Warsaw on September 29-30, the Sme daily reported, writing that there is hope of persuading the Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) party to change its attitude towards approval of the changes in the European Financial Stability Fund (EFSF) and the establishment of permanent European Stability Mechanism (ESM).

“The need of acceptance of certain conditions has not surprised anybody,” said Radičová, as quoted by Sme, adding that she and Merkel discussed various ways to persuade SaS to vote for the changes.

Radičová also said that any eventual compromises should not endanger the basic agreement on the EFSF and ESM. She promised that Slovakia’s vote on ratification will be held between October 11 and October 14, the TASR newswire reported.

“I can say with certainty that this will be on the agenda ... before the beginning of the EU summit in Brussels [that will take place on October 17],” Radičova said, as quoted by TASR. She added that there is no room for alternative solutions and that her coalition partners are not against compromises.

Meanwhile, Slovakia’s vice-president of the European Commission, Maroš Šefčovič, met with Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič to discuss the bailout mechanisms, TASR wrote. He stated that a pattern in which Slovakia would agree to changes to the EFSF without any financial commitments would likely not be acceptable to the country’s partners in the eurozone.

“I assume that there will hardly be any interest in discussing such a proposal,” said Šefčovič, as quoted by TASR, stressing at the same time that this is a hypothetical question, as no such proposal has been officially made, adding that if such a proposal is tabled, ratification would not be complete and final.

A similar view is shared by Gašparovič, who urged the coalition to hold a vote on the EFSF with the most recent wording approved by EU leaders.

“The leaders of the individual countries agreed on it,” the president said, as quoted by TASR. “Slovakia will face questions if it seeks additional conditions under which we will or will not grant our consent. This is not good.”

Source: Sme, TASR

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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