EU must act to avoid post-Brexit 'conflagration': German Finance Minister

Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble speaks at a news conference on 2017 budget and financial plan till 2020 in Berlin, Germany July 6, 2016. REUTERS/Stefanie Loos

BERLIN (Reuters) - German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said European leaders must act quickly to demonstrate the EU remains the right vehicle to meet the challenges of globalization following Britain’s shock decision to leave.

In an interview with the Augsburger Allgemeine newspaper, veteran conservative lawmaker Schaeuble said the European Union was still the right answer.

“But we must act quickly so that no conflagration emerges from Brexit,” Schaeuble told the newspaper.

“Europe must quickly prove that it offers value by dealing with urgent questions” such as the migrant crisis and youth unemployment in southern Europe, he said.

He also reiterated his concern about the effects of low interest rates in the euro zone and other industrialized nations.

“Politicians must act to ease the path towards more growth by creating attractive conditions for private investment and structural reforms,” he said, adding the European Central Bank was fulfilling its mandate of focusing on price stability.

Writing by Madeline Chambers; editing by John Stonestreet