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German central banker: stick to deficit goals

Monday - 2/25/2013, 1:00pm  ET

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) -- The head of Germany's national central bank urged France to set an example for troubled eurozone countries and help restore confidence in the euro by bringing down its budget deficit.

Jens Weidmann said in the text of a speech Monday in Paris that cutting deficits will reassure investors and consumers that the 17 countries that use the euro are serious about sticking to rules on excessive deficits.

Weidmann, who also sits on the European Central Bank's rate-setting committee, said it was important for the "heavyweights" in the eurozone to send "clear signals which boost the credibility of the fiscal rules and agreements."

He said that "there is the criticism that deficit targets may, in fact, become a moving target."

European Union projections say France will miss its goal to cut its 2013 deficit to 3 percent of gross domestic product as established in European Union rules. Germany has a balanced budget.

Weidmann said it was essential for the two countries to work together to solve the crisis over too much government debt in several euro member countries.


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