Top European officials have called for authority to demand changes to eurozone countries' national budgets, as part of a grand vision to save the currency and strengthen the union.
The plan was drawn up by the "gang of four" European presidents: Council president Herman Van Rompuy, European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso, Eurogroup president Jean-Claude Juncker and European Central Bank president Mario Draghi.
Their proposal appears aimed at encouraging Germany to accept closer fiscal integration, such as jointly issued eurobonds, which spread debt risk across the eurozone and would lower the risk of individual states needing a bailout. Germany opposes a quick adoption of eurobonds because it would be exposed Berlin to more potential costs and reduce incentives for weaker states to fix their finances.
A central control over those finance policies may reduce Germany's fears.
"Greater pooling of decision-making on budgets...(and) effective mechanisms to prevent and correct unsustainable fiscal policies in each member state are essential," they wrote in the report to be debated at a summit of EU leaders on Thursday and Friday.
"Toward this end, upper limits on the annual budget balance and on government debt levels of individual member states could be agreed in common."
If a country were to flout budget rules "the euro area level would be in a position to require changes."
It is not clear how much appetite eurozone governments have for surrendering further control over their budgets to Brussels, although all agreed to abide by a 3% deficit limit when they joined the single currency.
The plan proposes a "medium term" move towards eurobonds, as well as creating a banking union with a single authority that would insure banking deposits and have the power to shut or recapitalise banks directly, with help from Europe's permanent bailout fund.
Germany's deputy foreign minister quickly dismissed the eurobond idea. "By beginning with pooling of debt, we're heading toward a dead end," Michael Link said , repeating a sentiment often expressed by Chancellor Angela Merkel.