icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm

Berlin to protect interests of Europe’s ‘smaller, northern democracies’ after Brexit – minister

Berlin to protect interests of Europe’s ‘smaller, northern democracies’ after Brexit – minister

Germany’s Europe Minister Michael Roth says Berlin will have to take on Britain’s role as “protector of the interests of Europe’s smaller, northern liberal democracies” after Brexit.

Roth is forecasting that Britain’s departure will rebalance the EU and Germany will bear a greater responsibility for the wealthy countries to its north and west.

“After Brexit, the EU’s balance will be realigned,” he told Reuters. “For Denmark, Sweden or the Netherlands, Britain was a very important partner. These countries now have an interest in closer ties to Germany.”

He also rejected suggestions that disagreements between Paris and Berlin over the enlargement of the EU into the Balkans suggested the ‘Franco-German motor’ that has traditionally been at the heart of European integration was now under strain.