The euros 10th birthday

As the EU celebrated the ten year aniversary of the the euro currency, adopted by the European Counil in 1998, Esolvakia received the go ahead to join the euro area in 2009.

The decision to adopt the euro has shaped the European Union’s development over the past decade. Both within our borders and beyond, the euro is a symbol of European integration and is used every day by 320 million citizens in fifteen Member States.

With the completion of a full economic cycle and the need consider the challenges which economic and monetary union will be facing over the next ten years, the Commission has published a communication that concluded that the euro is a resounding success.

Thanks to the euro, Europeans today enjoy greater macro-economic stability, lower interest rates and more modest price rises than in previous decades, despite the recent rise in inflation.

Also the euro zone has meant that the EU is much more integrated economically, with more trade between countries, greater opportunities for business and employment and more efficient markets. Thanks to the euro, our economies are better protected against external shocks and have become more important and influential on world markets. This has all produced many tangible benefits for citizens, of which the greatest is undoubtedly the creation of 16 million jobs.

However, these results to do mean that all our  aims were reached. These are some aspects which the Euro has not achieved:

  • Economic growth during these ten years has been lower than expected.
  • Differences continue to exist between the euro zone economies due to a lack of sufficient incentives to make all the necessary structural reforms.
  • External presence in the  worldwide in keeping with the size and scale of our economy is lacking.
  • The public image of the euro, which is widely associated with the image of the European Union, does not reflect all the objective benefits which it brings to citizens.

"This diagnosis serves to confirm that much still remains to be done. However, we must also take account of the new challenges facing us in future." declared Joaquín Almunia, the European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Policy.

In this way, in its Communication, la Commission does not restrict itself to reviewing what has been done, but instead proposes a debate on what should be improved with an eye to the future. As an initial contribution to the debate, we would put forward an agenda based on three pillars:

  • Internal functioning of economic and monetary union.
  • External agenda.
  • Improvement of the governance of economic and monetary union.

On the other hand the Commission has adopted a convergence report, which paves the way for Slovakia joining the euro area as of 1 January 2009. This would bring to 16 the total membership of the area.