Europe

Juncker opposed to selective child support payments

EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker says he is opposed to Austrian and German initiatives to reduce state child support payments to workers from some countries with dependent children in their homelands.

Both countries are lobbying the EU for the change, saying it should be instituted for European countries where wages are substantially lower than in theirs.

Juncker told the Austrian daily Kurier on Friday that he is "not positively receptive to these demands." He says they would not result in substantial savings for the countries making the payments and would increase EU bureaucracy.

Austria pays out about 112 euros ($120) per child per month at birth,with the amount rising in stages until the child is 19. That is to about four times the amount in neighboring Hungary, depending on the child's age.