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Saturday, November 22, 2003

The control of the Euro is at stake

I have written before in Dutch on the way politics in the Netherlands deals with the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP).
(Here, here and here in English).

To my surprise today Pedro Solbes (in a letter in my newspaper) supported the point of view of Dutch finance minister Zalm (who apparently regained his courage) declaring that "it's no use to agree on the Convention when the countries do not live up to what they agreed on." (my translation). The title of his letter is "the control of the Euro is at stake".
Our prime minister Balkenende, -I really don't like him-, is getting courage too and phones his colleagues in other European countries. Although I still think that their efforts are for the Dutch audience in the first place, I must admit that I start to incline to their point of view to some extent.

I have two reasons for that. The first one is that I plead for some kind of "Global Stability and Growth Pact". Of course that is only to say that we should watch the battle of the SGP very closely and learn of the mistakes that were made and are being made, but against this background I succeed in looking at the issue in more unbiassed way. So I can see that the arguments from France and (even more so) Germany do not focus on the wisdom of the pact per se but purely on the effects on France and Germany.

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