European finance ministers from all 27 member states are meeting in Luxembourg to discuss the controversial issue of a financial transaction tax.

Both France and Germany are pushing the idea of taxing financial transactions at EU level.

However the Irish government and a number of other member states remain opposed.

France and Germany see the tax as an opportunity to cool market speculation and to raise funds to tackle the eurozone debt crisis.

A financial transaction tax is the price German opposition Mps extracted from chancellor merkel in order to support the fiscal compact in a Bundestag vote next week, and its supported by France.

One idea is that it could create a fund to cushion taxpayers from having to bailout banks.

Ireland fear IFSC exodus

But Ireland remains opposed unless it's applied across all 27 member states, out of a fear that banks in the financial services centre would simply move to London to avoid the tax.

The idea is also opposed by Sweden and the Netherlands - but there may be a push to introduce the idea through so-called enhanced cooperation, meaning that a minimum of 9 countries could introduce their own tax.

This afternoon the crisis moves to Rome where the Italian prime minister hosts Angela Merkel, Francois Hollande, and the Spanish prime minister - the German chancellor is expected to come under further pressure to adopt a more flexible approach to the crisis.