Germany says confident France will meet deficit obligations

BERLIN Fri Apr 5, 2013 7:03am EDT

French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici (R) speaks during a meeting with Germany's Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble at the French National School of Administration in Strasbourg, April 4, 2013. REUTERS/Jean-Marc Loos

French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici (R) speaks during a meeting with Germany's Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble at the French National School of Administration in Strasbourg, April 4, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Jean-Marc Loos

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany is confident France will stick to European Union rules on targets to cut its public deficit, a German finance ministry spokesman said on Friday, a day after Paris urged Berlin to grant it more time to hit the goal.

"There are rules in the EU that apply for all. It's mostly down to the EU Commission to evaluate how to proceed further. Then the members of the EU council will look at it," said Martin Kotthaus, spokesman for Germany's finance ministry.

"We have full confidence that France will fulfill its treaty obligations."

France has acknowledged it will miss a 2013 goal of bringing its deficit down to 3 percent of output and wants its EU partners - notably Germany, the euro zone's largest economy - to give it another year to meet the target.

(Reporting by Stephen Brown and Annika Breidthardt)