European Innovation

Today, the Lisbon Council publishes a sharp and timely new e-brief, written by our excellent Economic Advisor Alessandro Leipold, a former acting director of the European Department at the IMF. It’s a good moment to weigh in, with the European Council taking stock of the Van Rompoy taskforce on economic governance later this week. Personally, I fear that the proposals for more resolute governance will be difficult to enforce in this body, where finance ministers will be loathe to enact reforms which may come to haunt them someday in case they ever violate the rules. Just think back to 2005, when Germany – once a staunch proponent of the Stability and Growth Pact – ‘reformed’ the Pact to escape punishment from Brussels. Will finance ministers and heads of government have the nerve this time around to enact new rules that they cannot escape from? I certainly hope so but I also have my severe doubts.

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