The German chancellor wants EU states to cede more power to Brussels. Angela Merkel has said Germany will put forward a plan to expand political union at an EU summit at the end of the month.
Merkel sees the future of the EU in a closer political union that gives Brussels more authority.
"We don't only need a currency union, we also need a so-called fiscal union, that is, more joint budget policy," she said in an interview with German broadcaster ARD aired on Thursday. "And we also need first and foremost a political union, meaning we must cede responsibilities to Europe step by step," she added.
Merkel acknowledged that the EU now has "different speeds," referring to the countries in the eurozone and those that have their own national currencies. She said the differences would become more pronounced over time, because the euro countries would inevitably draw closer together.
"We can't stand still because [others] don't yet want to come along," she said.
She said Europe should have a strategy for growth, but stressed that "budget consolidation and questions of growth are two sides of the same coin," adding that solid finances were necessary for growth.
Merkel has been the focus of increasing pressure domestically and internationally to find a solution to the eurozone financial crisis.
US President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron on Wednesday called for an immediate plan to shore up the euro.
ncy/tj (AFP, dapd, dpa, Reuters)