ECB's Asmussen tips end of bailout 'Troika'

Top ECB official Joerg Asmussen said Wednesday that the eurozone should begin to prepare for debt rescues without the help of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The German central banker, an increasingly vocal participant in EU decision-making and policy presentation, said that eurozone and EU-level managers were moving towards a "totally European system."

He spoke before the European Parliament's economics committee, and articulated his belief that the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) -- a firewall worth hundreds of billions of euros if pressed into service -- would become the core eurozone financial defence system.

That pre-supposed the end of the "Troika" system responsible for sovereign bailouts in Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Cyprus, which includes the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the IMF.

There have been several reports of heightened tension between representatives from the three bodies.