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Read the article at Euractiv.com

The eurozone flaws are well known, and we also know that Germany has always been the obstacle to progress. Now it is a social democrat minister who is blocking the agenda in Berlin. How big is your influence to lift Germany’s blockade?

These proposals were blocked first of all by the conservative family in Europe, which is still dominant. In the Socialist family, there are also differences, in particular within the German social democrats. Some of them are hesitating to support these reforms.

So what is going to happen in the run up to the crucial EU summit in late June?

In the Council of ministers, we have a new situation because the Eurogroup president (Portuguese Mario Centeno) is clearly in favour of reforms, supported by other ministers. But some ministers, in particular from the Netherlands and Austria, are resisting these reforms. The balance of power will be decided by the German minister, Olaf Scholz. He just took up the post and he needs to understand the situation. He took some positive steps in the last Ecofin Council in order to complete the banking union. But of course we want more from this minister.

Are you going to visit him? What is your leverage with him? 

Yes, I will meet with him in Berlin. My leverage is that I am the chair of the network of the Socialist and the Social democrat family across Europe and recently we concluded the report to reform the economic and monetary union. I intend to discuss this report with him.