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Home arrow newsitems arrow Sarkozy slams Hasty EU+€uro Enlargement Past Deals (1999-2001) cause of Debt in Greece+ €uroZone

Sarkozy slams Hasty EU+€uro Enlargement Past Deals (1999-2001) cause of Debt in Greece+ €uroZone

Written by ACM
Friday, 24 June 2011
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*Brussels/Angelo Marcopolo/- In what looks as a 1st move to start denouncing in public what "EuroFora" has criticized since 12/2009 as the real Cause of the Debt currently hitting Greece in €uroZone, and fight against it accordingly in order to become more Efficient, French President Nicmolas Sarkozy clearly accused Past Decisions (i.e. 1999-2001) related to EU's and €uro's Enlargements, even without due preparation, to be at the origin of present problems, at the eve of a crucial week for future developments, whose Policy Choices monopolized a quite Enigmatic Press Conference by German Chancellor Angie Merkel, at the end of June 2011's EU Summit :

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- In fact, at least if EU is limited just to the Measures already decided until now, for the moment, "we haven't finished to pay for (Past) decisions to Enlarge €uro and the EU !", Sarkozy denounced in reply to questions on Greece and €uroZone.

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- Particularly for those (EU/€uroZone's Enlargements) which were Unprepared, i.e. even "without having taken all (necessary) Measures on Economic Governance, comparable Competitiveness, Fiscal Harmonization, etc", the French President added topically, obviously referring to the recent EU Measures decided (after an initial Franco-German proposal, presented together with German Chancellor Merkel : See "EuroFora"s 12/2010 and 3/2011 NewsReports from Freiburg's and Brussels' Summits), from now on, for all Future EU/€uroZone Countries.

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+ EU Commissioner in charge of Economic/Monetary issues, Oli Rehn from Finland, had also recently criticized a German "Green" MEP, during an EU Parliament Committee's debate, for his Party's Past stance during the Schroeder/Fischer "Socialist-Green" Government coalitions around 2000, accused for having been "too Laxist" on the €uro area, (at the same time that they notoriously pushed for Turkey's controversial and unpopular EU bid)....

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A move which fits, perfectly well, "EuroFora"s critical Analysis and denonciation of the a 1999-2001 Politico-Financial Deal, according to which, the then "Socialist"" Greek Government had been helped to win (even with a razor-thin Majority), the 4/2000 Elections, thanks to an EU Decision for Greece's too early entry into €uroZone, even without having previously made the necessary Reforms in order to absorb, or at least diminish, a big and growing Debt, which had originated in a 1980-2000 Nepotist, Clientelist and largely Corrupted Era's Mass Hiring, mainly of cronies or lackey's of some politicians, in the State, Public Sector, Media, etc, often in counter-productive posts.

In "exchange", that former "Socialist" Government had to drop all earlier objections of Greece against Turkey's controversial and unpopular EU bid, (f.ex. on War Threats at the Aegean Sea and Territorial Revencications, Military Occupation of the Norhern part of Cyprus, serious Human and Rights Violations, lack of Democracy, Oppression of Religious and Ethnic Minorities, etc). But, as it is well known, the Debt notoriously hidden on 1999-2001 with technical Manipulations by USA's Goldman Sachs, False "EuroStat" Numbers, etc., suddenly, "blew" up under the 2008-2009 Global Financial Crisis and Speculators' Attacks.

So that now, the right remedy could not be limited just into taking Money from Production and/or from Poor People's Economies, which obviously risk to kill Growth, provoking Recession which would diminish the State's Revenues, and/or to risk dangerous social explosions by provoking a feeling of Injustice, respectively. It's much more vis a vis that Salaries' Mass of cushy-job holders and various cronies, lackeys, etc., hired by former mainly "Socialist" Governments during 1980-2000+, that actions obviously should be directed, in order to Stop Wasting precious Taxpayers' Money, reimburse eventually scandalously perceived for 2 Decades Public Funds, and avoid that this counter-productive Mass of Nepotism's Cronies, doesn' even get, now, some 2O or 30 Years more in Retirement benefits, etc. ...

I.e. a rare opportunity to join Truth, Justice and Morality together with Economifc Efficiency and Financial Economies, which could be strongly supported even by growing Popular Movements in Greece and elsewhere in the EU,  denouncing Corruption and failed politicians, even asking for Investigations in order to find and punish all those responsible for this counter-productive and Financialy catastrophic waste, without bureaucratic Time limits, nor Prescription or any other kind of Time Deadlines, until the situation is really settled. (See previous, relevant "EuroFora"s Publications, since 12/2009+).
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- But, meanwhile, "we (EU) had to deal with all that during a Global Crisis !.. inside a World where Billions circulate in an incredible Speed", and while "in Greece, Interest Rates grew + 30% in one and a half year, so that the Situation became Difficult, the Greek Government being unable to react alone", the French President observed.

- Nevertheless, in recent Economic issues, Europe succeeded to face the Global Crisis and prove its capacity to resist to all Crisis, €uro's parity to Dollar is largely Positive (1,40+), EU's Deficit is the Half of that of  USA's, and "until now, we succeeded to overcome all challenges", Sarkozy noted optimistically, observing also that, in 2 out of 3 cases, (i,e. in Ireland and in Portugal, unlike Papandreou's Greece), the Economic situation had been succesfuly brought under control, after EU reactions.
 
- "I am well aware of the Gravity of the Situation, ..but, all the times, we (EU) found a Solution, and Catastrophes were avoided, nevertheless", he added. + Moreover, "440 Billions €" are now guaranteed for facing such kind of problems, he observed, pointing at the adoption of the Permanent EU Stabilization Mechanism, officialy by this June 2011 EU Summit.
                
+ Indeed, Sarkozy's typical reaction to various attacks against EU's internal life, and on EU's Neighborhood, always was, from the start, to seize the opportunity of a Defensive Reaction in order not only to take care of the Urgencies, but also to Start Building something New in the EU, which would make it permanently more resiliant and stronger.

- "Naturally, it wasn't easy, with 27 Countries, 27 Histories, 27 Cultures, 27 Identities, etc"; the French President observed, hinting at the need to create 1 unique EU Identity; obviously indispensable for a Political Europe to exist.  

=> "There is really a (Political) Will to save the €uro" Currency, and "to ensure the Solidarity of €uroZone, which is extremely Strong", concluded Sarkozy.  
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+ Shortly afterwards, German Chancellor Angie Merkel was invited by several other Journalists to go further in details, as well as to consider various alternative solutions, and measures, according to eventual developments Next Week.

Merkel didn't have an opportunity to use exactly the same terms as Sarkozy (see supra), but at least some of her replies, left an impression that the German Chancellor might have started also to realize much more things than she said explicitly...
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 - "We (EU Summit)...have as Leaders once again very made it clear, that  will do everything to stabilize the €uro as a whole"; Merkel confirmed. + We agreed on the Permanent Stabilization Mechanism, the ESM, and we have managed to adapt the ESFSF. We are on the issue of economic Governance - that is, what is always referred to by experts as a "6 pack" - in the final meters and are in phase of agreement with the European Parliament" she noted.

+ And "We have encouraged the countries of Portugal and Ireland as well as Greece,to continue consistently the path that is dictated by the programs negotiated by the troika", she added.

- "Regarding Greece, we noted that Now the most important Laws on Privatization and Fiscal consolidation must be implemented, once these laws will be approved in the Greek Parliament", hopefully next week.


.  Once this done, EU will finalize, on the agreed "Basis",  the Basis .. for a "New Program, that will get the necessary additional funds from and Private sources, through informal and voluntary extension of the Greek current liabilities ...in order to achieve a substantial reduction of the necessary funds under the program, although of course the non-payment must be avoided. ", according to the decision earlier taken by EU Finance Ministers. ..                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
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    - Replying to a question on "the Greek Opposition Leader" Antonis Samaras (See "EuroFora"s earlier NewsReport from Brussels, yesterday), Merkel said that "there was ... an Agreement yesterday to allow the Legislative process in Parliament can begin", and, optimistically but carefully added that she was "quite confident".

    However, Merkel almost eluded a Journalist's question whether "it would be sufficient if the opposition leader said: "In Principle I agree with the Goals, but I want other Individual measures" ? 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          - "My Talks with the opposition leader (Samaras) made it clear that for stability in Greece certainly it would be very Desirable if the opposition could also agree, as has happened in Ireland and how it has happened in Portugal. We have said yesterday at the EPP meeting with all clarity: the more consistent, the better for Greece, the better for the euro, and so much the better for us all"


    But, ">>>  The Greek prime minister (Papandreou) is determined to implement his ideas with a parliamentary majority in the Greek Parliament.

>>> - "Now we will see what will happen..... But again. Better a broader support" she concluded", once again giving a slight impression that this would certainly be good, but perhaps not so necessary as some say...

- "We (EU) must now proceed Step by Step with Greece", the German Chancellor added later-on, saying that she does "Not want to take position on the Talks", due to go on between EU Finance Ministers, the Troika, Private Investors and the Greek Government, preferring to see first Greece officially undertake its "obligations", "then, see the Total Sum" of Money really needed, and, afterwards examine "what can be achieved through a voluntary participation of the Private sector", later-on, etc.

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    However, Merkel appeared to approach, at least partly, a key observation by the Greek Opposition (ChristianDemocrat/EPP) Leader Samaras, (who mainly accepts, even stronger Privatizations and Economies, but asks to help Production in order to generate Resources enabling to pay back the Debt), in reply to an interesting Question on Greece's "Competitiveness" :
    
    - "EU Commission's presentation on "Europe 2020" showed that Greece was at (only) 0.53 £ of GDP on Research and Development, down at the lowest rank, flanked by Romania and Bulgaria. Do you seriously believe that there are sufficient parameters for Greek Economy's Competitiveness, in order to pull itself out of the crisis ?", another journalist critically wondered.

    - Merkel acknowledged that "it is a Fact that too Little is spent on Research and development" recently in Greece, but, in addition, "also ..that the Community funds - are not exploited - for example, from the Cohesion Fund", due to lack of Money in Greece to co-fund projects.
    
    - "Therefore, it is only right and proper and good that the (EU) Commission wants to Support Greece on this path", the German Chancellor replied, obviously referring to EU Commission President Barroso's proposal to ease the Financial Conditions allowing Athens to use the EU Funds already earmarked for Greece.

    + Concerning particularly "Research", Merkel positively stressed that, "of course, one must make so that participation in European Research projects funded by the European Research Council is indeed possible, based on Excellence criteria", and not merely on Money.

    =>"Therefore, an effort must be made at this point, of course, to allow Greece to strengthen its Competitiveness as well as possible. I am convinced that the people of Greece can certainly achieve that", Merkel pointed out. .
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    But, when she was questioned on "the Emphasis put on the Parliamentary Voting Next Week in Greece", about a proposed Long-Term Financial Package and its Conditions, "what might happen, if the vote goes against the reforms and the bailout?"; Merkel preferred to stick to "Assumptions", without "speculating" :
    
    - "I am assuming that everything is done to give to the Vote a Positive outcome, and therefore I don't want not even to Speculate", the contrary", she warned.
    
    - "I also assume that (EU) finance ministers at their meeting (shortly afterwards) on (Sunday) 3rd July, will settle all aspects, so that the solidarity aid to Greece can be solved", Merkel added, pointing at a Link between the Greek Parliament's Vote and the EU Finance Ministers' decisions.

    + Similar Caution was expressed by Merkel also on anoher Question concerning whether the forthcoming "2nd Aid Package" "will be Enough to stabilize Greece in the Long-run", or not :

    -" There is always the case that these aid packages are based on Assumptions ...about economic Growth, Revenu  assumptions, assumptions that have something to do with the World economy as a whole", etc. she observed.

    => That's why, "we must look again and again: Will things go as hey were supposed to do ?  This should be now further checked on a Quarterly basis", Merkel replied carefully. "We must look from quarter to quarter, even if the assumptions prove to be true"; she added.

     - "But I have confidence in the 3 institutions :'' in the (EU) Commission, the IMF and the ECB, to negotiate now to the best knowledge and belief, a program that has a Good Chance, and, then, to provide the Desired Results.. Now, that is negotiated to the best of my knowledge and belief of the parties', Merkel concluded, indicating anew that several decisions still remain to be taken in due course, according to forthcoming developments...
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    Meanwhile, the Official EU Summit's Conclusions "call on Finance Ministers to complete work ... to allow the necessary Decisions to be taken by Early July" (i.e. shortly after the Greek Parliament's Vote : See supra), while also warning that, "given the Length, Magnitude and Nature of the required Reforms in Greece, National Unity is a prerequisite for Success".


    However, until now, it seems to be a Fact that the only main point on which appears already to exist a large "National Unity" in Greece today (including for the Demonstrators currently filling Athens' central streets), is  particularly, the Need to Fight against Corruption in the Public Sector, i.e., precisely a key point according to "EuroFora"s above mentioned analysis. (See supra)...

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    At any case, "€uro area Heads of State or Government reiterate their Commitment to do whatever is necessary to ensure the Stability of the €uro area as a whole".


    - "The Recovery in the €uro area is Well on Track; and has reached a Sustainable path of Solid Growth", EU leaders stressed. "The €uro is based on Sound Fundamentals, and we are deeply Satisfied with the track record of Price Stability achieved Since the Inception of the €uro", they remind.

**

(NDLR : DraftNews, as already send earlier to "EuroFora"'s Subscribers/Donors. A complete and more accurate Final Public Version is due asap).

***
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    Before the end of 2009, France and Germany will take strong initiatives to open "new Horizons" needed by Europe and the World, going well beyond the current Crisis' management, anounced French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angie Merkel, reassuring that both a judgement on Lisbon Treaty by nearby Karlsruhe German Federal Court, and the forthcoming National Elections in Germany would confirm their capacity to act.    

They were replying to Press questions in Berlin, after key-regional elections on Sunday, where Merkel's ChristianDemocratic party kept everywhere a strong 1st and won the possibility to forge a New Majority with Liberals at the largest of 3 Landers : Saxony (4 millions inhabitants), while its main competitor, the Socialdemocrat party fell to unprecedented lows : Tackled by the small "Linke" (left) party in Saarland (1 million inhabitants), it became even smaller than it in Saxony and Thuringen (3 million inhabitants), where SPD arrived only third. While its usual partners, the "Greens" also fell down, contrary to CDU's new partners, the FDP Liberals, who go up.

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    - "At any case, at the end of the year (2009), if things go as scheduled, we shall take strong initiatives, showing that Europe needs a Franco-German axis, as well as the World, even if it never excludes other" countries to join, replied Sarkozy to a question if France and Germany will revive the "European dream", by "relauncing the EU motor" for the Future, with actions going further than the mere management of the global crisis, (as it was done fex. in the Past with the creation of the "Euro" Monetary zone, etc).

    - "I am convinced that the Franco-German friendship must be constantly nourished by New Projects", he added."There are many areas of cooperation where we intend to take, very soon, some Franco-German initiatives, which will allow to open more Horizons" to the EU, Sarkozy stressed.

    But if "we don't speak about that now, it's only in order to avoid interfering in important elections coming in Germany", he observed. However, "we have already started to consider the Future with the (German) Chancellor, and what we can do in order to honour our predecessors". "We are already speaking about that, and we are preparing things". "I am working very well together with Mrs Merkel, and I wish that it goes on", Sarkozy concluded.

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    - "It's important for EU's credibility that France and Germany advance forward together", stressed Merkel from the outset. "Don't worry about Germany's capacity to undertake initiatives" with France, she added. "France and Germany will be perfectly able to make proposals" for the EU.

    -  "After-crisis" plans must be prepared, meanwhile, with measures "advancing progressively", Merkel anounced. And, for the short term, we must deal also with EU Citizens' dismay since they feel that it's a Scandal for some in the Financial Markets to be paid with excessive "Bonuses", etc, she agreed with Sarkozy.

    - "Abuses in financial markets must stop", stressed also Sarkozy. Backing Merkel's announcement that France and Germany call for an EU meeting to forge "a crystal-clear European position" in view of the G-14 Summit at Pittsburg, he warned that "everyone will have to undertake his responsibilities, in front of World's Public Opinion. particularly those who don't want to make the same effort of regulation as France and Germany".

    Moreover, "Global Trade cannot be correctly dealt, without taking into account also Environmental and Social rules", Sarkozy added, referring to recently expressed positions against Unfair Competition via Environmental and/or Social Dumping, (See earlier "EuroFora"'s publications).

    Such moves are obviously linked to the need to ensure at least an elementary respect for Human Rights by Third Countries, (f.ex. exploitation of Children's work, etc) in order to avoid, precisely, any such Social Dumping.

    - "EU has Values, protecting Human Rights and Human Dignity", and "it cannot close its eyes" in front of grave violations, particularly "Torture and/or killings", added, indeed, Sarkozy.

    Thus, "the time comes, where decisions must be taken". But, in case of "Sanctions", "all International opinion should be convinced of the need to take action", he observed.

    Expressed on the occasion of recent developments in Iran, the same principles should logically apply also to other similar cases, including fex. that of Hundreds of ECHR judgements' condemning f;ex. Turkey for grave crimes, (as Torture, brutal Killings, Enforced "Disappearances", Destruction of Family Homes, harassments and oppressive violations of Freedom of Speech, etc).

    Meanwhile, questioned on (EU Commission's chair)  Barroso's bid to succeed himself for a second mandate, they both expressed a "wish" or a "feeling" that "EU Parliament"'s various political Groups might fix a date for decisions "during September". However, is he is endorsed before the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, it will be legally necessary to re-vote anew for a full term of office afterwards, according to EU Legal Experts, revealed recently in Strasbourg the experienced former President of EU Parliament's Constitutional Committee, German Socialist MEP Jo Leinen. And Germany will not vote for Lisbon Treaty's ratification but only "on September 8 and 18", revealed Merkel, ( i.e. after EU Parliament's plenary session in Strasbourg).

    - Therefore, "for EU Commissioners' appointment, it's too early yet, because we must wait for the ratification of Lisbon Treaty" by all 27 EU Member countries, including naturally Ireland's Referendum on early October, said to "EuroFora" the influential President of EU Parliament's largest group of MEPs, Joseph Daul, expressing, however, the hope that a controversial deal with the head of the Socialist Group of MEPs, Martin Schultz of Germany, might hold for Barroso alone, at a forthcoming vote due to fix the Strasbourg plenary's Agenda.

    But MEPs reportedly just "postponed" for 1 week all their previously scheduled group meetings (See : http://www.euractiv.com/en/future-eu/barroso-unveil-summer-homework-week/article-184825 );

    However, while the choice of a new EU Commission's President by EU Parliament is supposed, according to many MEPs' wish, take place according to EU policy issues, paradoxically, this would mean that Barroso's bid would pass before even the anouncement of France and Germany's "initiatives" for EU's "new Horizons"...

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