The rift between the European Central Bank and French President Nicolas Sarkozy seems to be deepening. Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet has responded to a French demand that governments be given a greater voice in setting interest rates by saying through a spokeswoman that “Such declarations are not acceptable’‘ and any attempt to influence the ECB violates the EU’s founding treaty.
Sarkozy has got some support from Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel who backs France’s call for deeper talks on the value of the euro against other currencies and the effect that has on exports. But Berlin does not want to be drawn into the row over the French president’s attempts to put pressure on the European Central Bank over interest rates.
Sarkozy is not backing down, his spokesman said we’ve never asked for an end to ECB independence but will not give up on maintaining a discussion on European monetary policy.