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Business

Bundesbank Deputy Criticizes Government

The interim head of Germany's central bank, Jürgen Stark, on Thursday said the government had been meddling in the Bundesbank's affairs during the perks crisis concerning bank president Ernst Welteke. "It did impair us, that at regular intervals comments from Berlin and expectations were expressed, that could be seen as impairing the efficiency and independence of the Bundesbank," Stark said in an interview with German state broadcaster ZDF. The government called for Welteke's resignation Thursday, after the Bundesbank's board of directors said Wednesday it would be sufficient for him to take a leave of absence, which Welteke agreed to. Germany's head banker has come under fire for having allowed the Dresdner Bank to pay for his €7,600 tab at a luxury hotel in Berlin in 2001. Newsmagazine Focus reported Friday that the government was already anxious for Welteke's ouster since he opposed investing the proceeds of selling Germany's gold reserves in Berlin's plans to boost innovation.

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