Olaf Scholz says 'The free movement of labour is part of the EU'
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Former Brexit Party MEP Ben Habib fears SPD leader Mr Scholz, who replaced Angela Merkel this week at the head of a three-party “traffic light” coalition government, would be “a problem for the UK”. Speaking on Wednesday alongside leader of the Greens and the liberal FDP party, Mr Scholz said: “A sovereign Europe is the key for our foreign policy.
“As an economically strong and the most populous country in the heart of Europe, it is our mission to enable, foster and advance a sovereign Europe.”
According to a coalition agreement, the parties want the use the Conference on the Future of Europe as a means of reforming the EU into a fully-fledged federation.
David Jones, the Tory MP for Clwyd West and the deputy chairman of the European Research Group, suggested Mr Scholz’s intentions were clear.
The new Chancellor has left no room for doubt about his vision for Europe: a full blown superstate.
David Jones MP
He told Express.co.uk: “The new Chancellor has left no room for doubt about his vision for Europe: a full blown superstate.
“That may suit Germany, but it won’t suit every European member state.
“It certainly would not have suited the United Kingdom, and his statement only underlines how wise we were to leave when we did.”
Mr Habib, who served as one of 29 Brexit Party representatives in the European Parliament in 2019, was equally unequivocal.
He told Express.co.uk: “The implications of a Federal Europe are bad for the world.
“Europe is often at odds with the Anglo-sphere. It has always been thus. It is hungry for resources and mercantilist in its trade policy.
“This attitude is best exemplified by the way it has stripped the North Sea of its fish. It cares not for the environment if its interests are at stake.”
Mr Scholz singled out Britain for criticism in September, blaming Brexit for Britain’s shortage of lorry drivers.
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Mr Habib warned: “Olaf Scholz is clearly going to be a problem for the UK and the world.
“He cannot see beyond his EU-orientated nose.
“Freedom of movement is not to blame for the lack of hauliers. It is poor working conditions, poor pay and no training that is to blame.”
He added: “This problem has been in the making for years and triggered by the lockdowns ending.
“The UK badly needs a proper industrial policy (which is likely to be beyond the skillset of our current govt).
“But Scholz’s comments about hauliers reveals his antipathy for the UK.
“As I said, Europe is often at odds with the Anglo-sphere.
“We are going to have to watch him carefully.”
Jayne Adye, director of Get Britain Out, told Express.co.uk: “The UK Government has long taken the stability and predictability of Angela Merkel for granted when it comes to our dealings with both Germany and the European Union.
“However, the new German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz’s new Government – built on a three-way coalition which includes the far left ‘Alliance 90/The Greens’ and the libertarian ‘Free Democratic Party’ (FDP) which have the potential to upset the applecart and entirely change our relationship with the EU as they are reportedly proposing an enhanced European Federation which would be of concern.”
The incoming German government faces immediate challenges, with Europe grappling with the fallout from Brexit, a crisis on the European Union’s border with Belarus and surging COVID-19 cases.
Mr Scholz, 63, an experienced politician who was finance minister in the outgoing “grand coalition” of the SPD and Mrs Merkel’s CDU, said that fighting the COVID-19 pandemic would be his top priority.
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