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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Merkel Finds Big Support In Germany

BERLIN -- As German Chancellor Angela Merkel heads to Asia this weekend, her standing at home floats at sky-high levels -- she enjoys unprecedented poll ratings, strong economic growth and the first government budget surplus since Germany's 1990 reunification.

Wrapping up a two-day meeting with members of the right-left coalition of her own Christian Democrats and the Social Democrats on Friday, Germany's first female leader appeared set to stay the course: She highlighted the same issues that helped win her overwhelming popularity at home and abroad in her first 21 months on the job.

"We want to strengthen the recovery and not leave anybody behind," Merkel said at a press conference after the Cabinet meeting. "If we succeed in doing so, it means that globalization can also be controlled politically."

Merkel also told reporters that drawing up a bill to provide guidelines on the purchase of German assets by foreign government-owned investment funds was high on her government's agenda.

Even though critics charge that Merkel is reaping the benefits ushered in by a series of painful reforms implemented by her predecessor, Gerhard Schr?eder, her ratings are the highest for any German leader since World War II.

A poll conducted by the Emnid Institute and published Sunday by the Bild weekly showed Merkel's midterm approval at a record 76 percent, with only 21 percent of Germans wanting a change of leadership. No margin of error was given.