World

French, German leaders agree on need to have a full-time president for 17-country eurozone

  • French President Francois Hollande, left, arrives with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Elysee Palace, Thursday May 30, 2013, at the Elysee palace in Paris.(AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)

    French President Francois Hollande, left, arrives with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Elysee Palace, Thursday May 30, 2013, at the Elysee palace in Paris.(AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)  (The Associated Press)

  • French President Francois Hollande, right, arrives with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Elysee Palace, Thursday May 30, 2013, at the Elysee palace in Paris.(AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)

    French President Francois Hollande, right, arrives with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Elysee Palace, Thursday May 30, 2013, at the Elysee palace in Paris.(AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)  (The Associated Press)

France and Germany are pushing for the creation of a full-time president for the 17-country euro currency bloc with stronger powers to drive economic policy.

French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel say they agree on the need for a new high-level leader of the eurozone as a way to improve coordination.

Speaking Thursday at a joint press conference in Paris, Hollande said he and Merkel "are in agreement that there should be more eurozone summits, with a full-time Eurogroup president with strengthened powers."

Currently, the meetings of eurozone finance ministers — collectively known as the Eurogroup — are chaired by the Dutch finance chief, Jeroen Dijsselbloem.

Merkel seconded the call, saying "we need more economic policy coordination, especially in the Eurogroup."