BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany will push for reforms to make the world’s biggest economies more competitive and protect against future crises when it takes the helm of the G20, Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said on Friday, dimming hopes of fiscal stimulus to boost growth.
“We will forcefully insist on structural reforms to improve our resilience against developments that have the potential to lead into crisis,” Schaeuble told the Bundestag, the lower house of parliament.
“There is no lack of debt in this world, there is no lack of central bank liquidity in this world, but there definitively is a lack of competitiveness in this world because many countries have missed out on many reforms.”
Germany, which has rejected calls by the European Commission for more fiscal stimulus to help boost euro zone growth, takes over the G20 presidency – grouping leading developed and developing economies – at the start of December.
Schaeuble said this week that the European Union’s executive should not direct its call for fiscal stimulus at Germany as Europe’s biggest economy has increased investment more than the euro zone average in the last decade.
Schaeuble warned on Friday that “developments leading into crises can be detected all around the world”.
Germany says a lack of structural reforms by its euro zone peers is hampering a full recovery in the currency bloc. Some other euro zone countries, led by France and Italy, would like budget leeway to stimulate growth through public spending.
The G20 was founded in 2009 during the financial crisis.
(Reporting by Matthias Sobolewski and Sabine Siebold; Editing by Kevin Liffey)