Europe Economy

Germany May Add Money to Rescue Fund at the Start and Reuters

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday European Union leaders wanted to conclude negotiations on the euro zone's new, permanent bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) quickly and that Germany was ready to pay more funds into it at the beginning.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel
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"We want to conclude negotiations on the ESM quickly, with the new instruments included. And we want, if necessary, and Germany would be ready to do this if the others do it, to perhaps pay in more capital at the start of the ESM, because if capital is invested is sends an important signal to the markets."

"In the future, we will need more Europe, not less. That means opening ourselves in the internal market," she added.

The euro trimmed losses and Bunds and Treasurys pared their gains after her comments.

Merkel also said the euro zone's top priority for the beginning of 2012 was to secure a second aid package for Greece, while she expressed admiration for how quickly Italy's new government has launched reforms.

Merkel said after talks with Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti in Berlin that the Greek package had to be resolved before Europe could start working out how to boost growth and jobs.

"The euro zone's first obligation this year is to resolve a second Greek programme and finalise these negotiations with the banks so that we can then concentrate on structural problems in the euro zone," Merkel told a news conference.