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BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany should invest more in infrastructure, research and education, the chairman of euro zone finance ministers Jeroen Dijsselbloem said, adding his voice to growing criticism of Berlin s reluctance to launch stimulus measures.
Germany is under fire internationally for focusing on keeping its budget tight at a time of record low borrowing costs and while its own economy and that of the euro zone struggle.
It should invest more in roads, digital infrastructure, research and development and education, Dijsselbloem said on the sidelines of the International Monetary Fund conference in Washington, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported on Monday.
Germany should also not be content with reforms carried out a decade ago. Structural reforms are not something you undertake every 10 or 20 years, the Dutchman was quoted as telling the German daily.
He referred to labour market reforms imposed by Chancellor Angela Merkel s predecessor, Social Democrat Gerhard Schroeder, during his tenure from 1998 to 2005. These cut benefits for long-term unemployed and made hiring and firing workers easier.
Germany has to be vigilant, in order to remain competitive. You can t look back with self-satisfaction at reforms which took place years ago, Dijsselbloem said.
(Reporting by Alexandra Hudson; Editing by Michael Nienaber and John Stonestreet)
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