Leaders of the 27-member European Union began here this evening a two-day meeting to discuss the creation of an Economic and Monetary Union to overcome the economic and financial crisis in Europe.
"Our objective for today is to map out our next steps towards a genuine Economic and Monetary Union. We must implement our agenda on competitiveness and on growth," President of the EU Council, Herman Van Rompuy, said in his opening remarks at the summit.
"Since the summer, we have made a lot of progress in our efforts to overcome the immediate crisis in the eurozone. The worst is now behind us, but of course much still needs to be done," he said.
On his part, UK Prime Ministers David Cameron told reporters on arrival for the summit that "the Eurozone needs a banking union but Britain won't be part of this banking union".
"The broader discussion will be how Europe is changing and a lot of that change is driven because of the euro, because the countries in the euro need to integrate more," he said.
"We are not going to join the euro so we won't be part of that integration, " Cameron added.
Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said that to have a full fledged banking union you need to answer to the question what to do with failing banks.
"Sweden will also remain outside because Swedish tax payers and Swedish well-run banks do not want to cover losses in other countries banking system," he added.