Berlin says "no difference" with Rome on EU budget rules

BERLIN, July 4 Fri Jul 4, 2014 6:36am EDT

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BERLIN, July 4 (Reuters) - The German government has no difference of opinion with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi on how the European Union can strike a balance between fomenting growth, respecting fiscal rules and improving competitiveness, Angela Merkel's spokesman said.

"Germany and Italy want fundamentally the same thing - they want European institutions that work for the people," the German chancellor's spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said on Friday.

Seibert said the EU Stability and Growth Pact was designed to ensure sustainable growth, adding: "As far as I know there's no difference between the German and Italian governments on this, we are pulling in the same direction." (Reporting by Stephen Brown)

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