A eurozone banking union will not be established by the beginning of 2013 as discussions continue about the terms and conditions attached to such a move.
That is according to Michael Link, Germany's Europe minister, who has indicated there are still several hurdles to be cleared before this agreement can be finalized, Reuters reports.
Policymakers across the economic bloc have put a deal in place in principle whereby all financiers in the region will be supervised by a single body as they seek to find a way to ease the ongoing debt crisis.
However, there are still some differences of opinion among eurozone member states as to what exactly the union will entail - a fact Mr Link has said means the agreement definitely will not be in place in the early stages of next year.
"There are too many technical issues, too many expert issues that need to be clarified ... we want to act fast but precision is a priority," he noted.
By Gary Cooper