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Eurozone ministers reach compromise deal on reform package

December 4, 2018
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European Central Bank President Mario Draghi, front second right, and Portuguese Economy Minister Mario Centeno, center right, hold giant euro coins during a group photo of EU finance ministers in Brussels, Monday, Dec. 3, 2018. The euro celebrates 20 years of being in use in January of 2019. At front left is Luxembourg's Finance Minister Pierre Gramegna and second left is European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Pierre Moscovici. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)

BRUSSELS (AP) — Eurozone finance ministers have agreed to strengthen the single currency bloc’s defenses against any future financial crisis.

Eurogroup President Mario Centeno said early Tuesday that “after several months of intense negotiations and a very tough and long meeting we delivered a comprehensive plan to strengthen the euro.”

Centeno said that new measures will be introduced to keep on top of any further financial crisis and to enhance debt sustainability. One proposal will see the bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism, provide financial assistance in times of need.

The discussions among the 19 eurozone finance ministers pitted France against several northern European nations.

The plan now moves to next week’s EU summit of government leaders.

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