European Union leaders are preparing to meet for a closely-watched Brussels summit on the fate of the euro. On the summit's eve, German Chancellor Angela Merkel held two hours of talks with the French President Francois Hollande in Paris. The two remain at odds on how to move forward, with Germany opposed to pooling debt while France insists the eurozone needs further integration. Mrs Merkel has warned there is no "magic formula" to solve the crisis. "Because I know the expectations and hopes that are pinned on this summit, I will repeat right at the start what cannot be said often enough," Mrs Merkel said in Berlin before the Paris talks. "There is no quick solution and no simple solution. There is no one magic formula... with which the government debt crisis can be overcome in one go." Mrs Merkel left for Brussels without making further statements after her meeting with Mr Hollande but said that "progress" for a pact for growth had been made and she hoped European leaders would adopt a 130bn-euro ($162bn) stimulus package. Mr Hollande, who became French president on a ticket of anti-austerity, has been a strong supporter of the growth package. European authorities have unveiled proposals such as the creation of a European treasury, which would have powers over national budgets. The 10-year plan is designed to strengthen the eurozone and prevent future crises, but critics say it will not address current debt problems. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said on Wednesday that his country could not afford to finance itself for long at current bond rates.
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