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Merkel at the German parliament last week Michael Sohn/AP/Press Association Images

Merkel: Europe must stick to new financial rules

But the German chancellor said it “won’t always be easy” to keep to the agreement – which could commit Ireland to years of austerity Budgets.

GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA Merkel has said Europe must abide by the new rules it has agreed on to stabilise the euro.

She also called for the EU to turn its attention to generating economic growth.

Most European Union leaders agreed a week ago to participate in a new budget-stability treaty – designed to deter runaway deficits and supposed to become law by March.

It emerged yesterday that the agreement could see Ireland forced into a decade of austerity Budgets, with the Government committed to cutting at least €7billion a year from our national debt.

Sinn Féin TD Pearse Doherty told “It would just mean huge austerity that would just cripple the economy.”

Merkel said in her weekly video podcast today that it’s important the agreements be implemented. She says: “we must above all keep to these rules in future – and that won’t always be very easy.”

Merkel added: “we must then take care of growth, in that we generate growth again, invest in the future – as far as possible not on credit, of course – and that jobs arise from this.”

The chancellor says youth unemployment in Europe is much too high.

- Additional reporting from AP

More: Draft EU deal could commit Ireland to austerity for a decade>

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