The Euro celebrates its 20th birthday20:13 - 1/1/2019
Information / follow up
Twenty years ago, on January 1, 1999, the euro became the official currency of 11 countries in the European Union and has since passed with challenges that accompanied the political and economic developments in the old continent and the world.
The Euro is one of the flowers of European integration, preceded by long arrangements by the European Union, including the establishment of the monetary union in particular in the coordination of the economic and financial policies of the members of the Union.
The euro now trades as the official currency in most EU countries, including the 19 members of the euro area, as well as countries outside the EU, and small countries such as Andorra, Monaco and the Vatican.
The euro road has been full of challenges from the start. The EU economy, several years after the new currency was hit hard by the global financial crisis, led to a 4.5% fall in GDP in 2009 and a rise in unemployment, Inflation and exacerbating the problems of banks.
These developments forced the EU leadership to set up a program to help the banking system in its five worst-hit countries - Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Cyprus - which ended in August 2018 with the suspension of loans to Athens.
And those countries are about to be insolvent, and if that happened, the ambiguity would surround the fate of the European currency.
Many analysts were talking about the risk of the collapse of the euro area at this stage, but the situation has gradually improved. The GDP of the 19 countries is still growing since 2014, according to official statistics. The European Commission expects growth to continue in 2019, , Such as the pace of inflation and the level of unemployment.
The spokesman of the European Central Bank told the Russian "Novosti" the possibility of expanding the list of members of the European Monetary Union within two years - five years ahead, explaining that the talk about Bulgaria and Croatia, while experts and analysts do not expect the withdrawal of any members of the euro area of them in the foreseeable future, In light of the difficulties that accompanied the process of "Brikst" faltering.
A spokesman for the European Bank said Britain's exit from the EU could affect the euro-zone economy but not the stability of its currency. The eurozone's administration is taking steps to promote integration within the monetary and economic union, General of the European Union.
The Business Europe conference believed that the emergence of the euro helped to make significant gains for the business community and EU citizens by reducing currency conversion risks, enhancing financial stability and creating better investment and trading conditions on the continent.
But some analysts warn of excessive optimism about the fate of the European currency. The chief financial strategist of Saxo Bank, an investment banker, John Hardy, pointed to a fundamental flaw within the structure of the EU: that each country has its own budget and sovereign debt but does not control its currency And monetary policies.
Hardy said the euro is too expensive for EU peripheral countries such as Italy and Greece, especially under their sovereign debt, but they can not devalue the currency, while central EU countries, notably Germany, do not care to fund the budget deficit of their backward colleagues.
Kenneth Wattert, chief economist for European affairs at London-based IHS, said the EU has yet to contain financial risks, and the euro zone is far from perfect.
But despite these warnings, a new generation of Europeans has emerged over the past two decades, and they have never known a different financial system than in the euro zone.
Public opinion polls show that the level of euro support among Europeans rose from 51 to 64 percent between 2002 and October 2018, which is the highest level of support recorded by the European currency in its history, while 25% of the respondents that the euro negatively affects their countries.End 25 nhttps://www.almaalomah.com/2019/01/01/378750/