Merkel says German government will further increase investment

German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives for a TV interview by ARD public broadcaster in Berlin Germany

German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives for a TV interview by ARD public broadcaster in Berlin Germany

"As far as an upper limit is concerned, my position is clear: I will not accept it", Merkel said at her annual "summer interview" with television channel ARD on Sunday night.

The chancellor rejected calls to limit the number of people allowed to ente Germany.

Under Merkel, Germany has made it a priority to stop running up debt but has faced criticism for spending and investing too little.

Schulz, a Social Democrat whose party has been Merkel's coalition partner for the past four years, pledged on Sunday to guarantee that surplus revenue would go toward spending on infrastructure if he wins the Chancellery on September 24.

Merkel said Germany had to increase investment in high-speed internet broadband connections.

Merkel has said she is open to proposals of strengthening the single currency through the creation of a euro zone finance minister who would oversee a pooled budget for investments and transfers meant to help member states cushion downturns.

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Schulz also called for an "opportunity account" for employees, with an "opening deposit" from the government, which could be used to finance new qualifications or other things.

He said: "Germany is a great country". His party is now the junior partner in Merkel's governing coalition - an arrangement both want to end.

"We now can not spend the money that we have", Merkel told ARD public broadcaster in an interview, pointing to planning and capacity bottlenecks in the construction industry as well as at the level of regional authorities. "I see the main point not in the question of whether there should be more money - we can and must do that - but first speeding up planning".

A full fourth term would extend her chancellorship to 16 years through to 2021. There is now no single obvious conservative successor.

The German leader defended her fiscal police after her rival, Social Democrats candidate for chancellor, Martin Schulz, pledged to increase public investment. Asked about the violence at the G20 summit in Hamburg earlier this month, Merkel defended the decision to hold the meeting in Germany's second-biggest city.

"I will not accept it", she said.

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