European Fiscal Compact as a spur for governments to maintain sound and sustainable public finances
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Talking about the economic crisis in Europe, the so called ‘European sovereign debt crisis’ (also referred as the Eurozone crisis) is an ongoing problem which most Member States of the EuropeanUnion (further referred as the EU) have been dealing with. Resulted from a combination of complex factors, it is claimed that the landmark – apart from easy credit conditions in a period of 2002–2008 that encouraged high-risk lending and borrowing practices – was the monetary union among the Eurozone without the fiscal one.1 While the setting of central bank interest rates and monetary easing was determined by the European Central Bank, taxation and government spending remained mostly under the control of national governments. Despite the fact that in 1992 Members of the EU signed the Maastricht Treaty pledging to limit their deficit spending and debt levels, the very idea to let the EU coordinate the fiscal policies of Member States conceived in the late 1990s. Notwithstanding, the Stability and Growth Pact2 – an agreement reached in order to facilitate and maintain the stability of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), has occurred to be unenforceable instrument and has not prevented the financial crisis among the Eurozone. What was said to cure the crisis, was – according to the abovementioned - the stricter fiscal regulation. This paper intends to shed some light on the issue.
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