Where is the euro headed?

EESC opinion: Where is the euro headed?

Key points:


When the international economic and financial crisis struck it exposed the structural limitations and contradictions in EMU, depriving the euro of its propensity to attract. It was thought that all it would take to make EMU work was a set of "accountancy" rules, whereas the problem was not technical but economic and political.

The EESC recognises the importance of stability, but stability must not only concern prices or financial institutions, but also politics and social conditions.

The EESC believes that a single currency will be unsustainable unless we achieve convergence between the economic capacities of the euro area countries and improve overall competitiveness, objectives which require economic as well as political commitment.

The Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance stresses stability without proposing joint financial instruments for recovery and employment. Europe instead needs to go back to generating wealth in order to redistribute it fairly.

Briefly, these are the four recommendations for completing the euro framework:

  • EU economic governance to promote growth, including via financial investments through bonds attracting excessive global savings; a common budget for the euro area; reducing economic asymmetries between the euro countries;
  • monetary and financial governance: completing the ECB's mandate and the internal market for finance, also through banking union;
  • moving towards political and social union, making the decision-making process more democratic and transparent and, where necessary, acting on the basis of strengthened cooperation;
  • strengthening the international role of the EU and global governance.