Czech PMs refusal to join EU fiscal pact exposes rift within government.

By bne IntelliNews February 1, 2012
The refusal of Czech prime minister Petr Necas to join the EU fiscal treaty at this weeks summit of the unions leaders has exposed a rift within the three-party governing Czech coalition, local media reported. Necas position was supported by Radek John, chairman of the junior ruling party, Public Affairs (VV) but foreign minister Karel Schwarzenberg, who is also leader of the other coalition partner TOP 09, criticised Necas and said his dismissal of the pact is damaging for the country. The main opposition party Social Democrats also criticised Necas stance and said it would seek to change his mind. Necas is opposed to the fiscal pact mainly due to the fact that the current draft of the agreement doesnt give non-eurozone states much say and he also cited difficulties in ratifying the treaty. The Czech President Vaclav Klaus, a staunch eurosceptic, has repeatedly said he would not sign the treaty into Czech law. Twenty-five of the EUs 27 member states agreed to sign the fiscal pact that seeks to tighten budget discipline to avoid a repeat of the eurozone debt crisis. The Czech Republic and Britain are the only ones to stay out for now.

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