2013: A Year in the Crisis
So here we are in 2014. As this edition of the Euro Crisis blog draws to a close, it is time to say farewell to the readers and greet the new contributors who will take over and comment on the Euro zone crisis as it develops from here on in. Farewells are also an appropriate […]
Too Much Trust in EU Institutions
The general impression is that the EMU zone (which gathers countries belonging to, or potentially belonging to, the euro) suffers from a crisis of trust. How can we move forward with European integration when people lack trust in EU institutions? The facts may however be quite different: there is too much trust in the EU […]
Are we Living in a Post-EU Society?
There seems to be a paradox: whereas the euro crisis has enforced deeper integration, economic and political attention is shifting away from the EU. Europhiles blame the Eurosceptics but EU-watchers should be careful to follow simplistic reasoning. Dutch Foreign Affairs Minister Frans Timmermans has the reputation to be an EU-believer and was, among others, a […]
Will France Become like the Netherlands or the Netherlands like France?
To understand the euro project we need to go back to 1989 and the frustrations over exchange rate adaptations under the European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM). France was frustrated by the hard Deutsch Mark and, occasionally, lost billions on aligning the FF to the DM. Mitterrand used the German unification as a lever to get […]
Help the Bruised French out of the Corner!
There has been a lot of bad news last week: the Eurozone is further contracting, France is moving into recession and the EU has been dramatically losing support all across Europe according to figures published in a Pew poll. Watching President Hollande’s Élysée address one year into his presidency one saw a cornered head of […]
Doubts about Rehn’s Position as Independent Commissioner
Rehn has spoken. Friday 3 May, the independent Commissioner for economic and monetary affairs gave his verdict on the state of the national economies in the EU. His statements were remarkable in several ways and come at a time when he has to prove his worth as an independent Commissioner. France, which has been dragging […]
On Axes and Party Politics: the End of Europe’s Predictability
In a commentary last year on the eve of the celebrations of the 50th anniversary of the Élysée Treaty I wondered to what extent the notion of ‘the Franco-German axis’ was still a useful framework to analyse politics in Europe. I argued that in the course of the euro crisis, economic and monetary policies in […]
The French Squeeze
There are signs that the economies in the eurozone are picking up in various ways. Recent figures of the ECB on Target2 (the capital account of the eurozone countries within the ECB) show remarkable signs of improvement. The claims of the triple-A countries Germany, Finland and the Netherlands on the problem countries are going down. […]