Easy to bend rules of EU debt treaty: Lithuania president
(BRUSSELS) - A new EU treaty aimed at preventing a repeat of the eurozone debt crisis leaves scope for states to bend the rules, Lithuania President and former EU budget commissioner Dalia Grybauskaite said.
"I am sure there will be eagerness among some member states to interpret differently for example budgetary rules, methodology, what to exclude," Grybauskaite told AFP of the new fiscal pact drawn up to re-affirm tight limits for public deficits and debt.
"We've seen this before -- I hope the pressure from outside will be heavy enough not to allow member states and the (EU) institutions to take such interpretations before everything is implemented," she said.
The treaty, signed in Brussels on Friday, was undermined within hours when Spain said it would need to re-negotiate the deficit limit for this year agreed with European Union partners.
Grybauskaite was one of 25 EU leaders to sign alongside Spain's prime minister Mariano Rajoy.
The Spanish premier later said soaring unemployment and a deepening recession meant his government would end up spending tens of billions more than it raised.
Former Soviet republic Lithuania, which originally targeted euro adoption by 2014 but is now expected to delay take-up, is one of the EU's fastest-growing economies alongside neighbouring Poland.
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