February 19, 2018 / 5:24 PM / a year ago

Spain's de Guindos says he will defend independence of ECB

Spain's Economy Minister Luis de Guindos talks to the media during a eurozone finance ministers meeting in Brussels, Belgium, February 19, 2018. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Spanish Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said he would defend the independence of the European Central Bank after being chosen as its new Vice President from June by euro zone ministers.

“I have been a minister, but to be a minister is something that does not limit the defense that I make on the independence of the European Central Bank. I will defend the independence of the European Central Bank,” de Guindos told reporters after his appointment.

The nomination will be formally adopted at a meeting of EU heads of state at the end of March and de Guindos will take up his new post on June 1.

The move is seen as likely to boost the chances of a German becoming head of the ECB next year, though de Guindos said there was “no conditionality attached at all” to his nomination.

Reporting by Francesco Guarascio, writing by Julia Fioretti

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