European Commission President Barroso says austerity needs balance

April 22, 2013 at 7:55 AM

BRUSSELS, April 22 (UPI) -- European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said austerity budgets need to be balanced with strategies that promote economic growth.

"While I think this policy is fundamentally right, I think it has reached its limit," Barroso said Monday, referring to austerity budgets that European countries have adopted to bring government debt under control.

"This is indispensable but it has to be complemented by a stronger emphasis on growth and growth measures, even in the short term," he said.

Barroso made his comments at the Think Tank Dialogue in Brussels, MarketWatch reported.

"Even if the policy of correcting deficit is fundamentally correct, we can always discuss fine tuning of pace," he said, suggesting that the European Union does not need to change its financial targets for debt if it adjusts how quickly countries are expected to correct their debt problems.

The current target for government deficits is 3 percent of gross domestic product, MarketWatch reported.

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