The future of Czech policy towards the European Union became very uncertain after the country held elections on October 20-21. Not only did billionaire Andrej Babiš’s party, ANO, often described as populist and Eurosceptic, secure a landslide victory; the remaining parties, of which four of the five most popular are anti-establishment, failed to secure enough votes to create majority without ANO.
According to a recent (May 2017) public opinion poll, 72 per cent of Czech people favour keeping their national currency whereas only 21 per cent would welcome a switchover to the Euro. Continue reading Czech Own Currency Insures Against Euro Losses
There is not, and there has never been, a more important mission for the generation, which spans communism and a free Poland, than a permanent anchoring in Western structures. Joining NATO and the European Union seemed to be a happy outcome of that mission. Unfortunately, it is still far too early to rejoice. Continue reading Poland Needs to Cling to the Eurozone
In his autobiographical and excellent overview of culture and society in Europe at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, ‘The World of Yesterday’, the Austrian writer Stefan Zweig showed how quickly the categories and concepts that describe the world around us can become obsolete. The lead up to World War I and the 1920s were separated by a mere decade, but when viewed in retrospect, these two decades seem to have little in common. For Zweig, writing in 1940, that entire bygone world was nothing more than an implausible legend. Continue reading Prepare for a New Europe
During the summit marking the 25th anniversary of the Maastricht Treaty, in December 2016, the president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, called for a move forward with a two-speed Europe and also for the creation of a different orbit for those EU Member States who do not wish to take part in all facets of EU integration. If implemented, this approach will have far-reaching consequences for the CEE region, especially for the countries of the Visegrad group (the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia), which could effectively be side-lined in a two-speed Europe. Continue reading Will a Two-speed European Union Side-line the Visegrad Four?
When it joined the European Union in 2004, Poland was obliged to adopt the Euro (providing the country meets the Maastricht criteria) in the same manner as the other nine new member states and the three which entered the Block in 2007 and 2013 — at some undefined point in the future. Since then, the Baltic countries, Slovakia, Slovenia, Cyprus and Malta have all changed their national currencies, but Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and Croatia have not yet done so. Continue reading Poland: Is it Ready, and is it Time to Adopt the Euro?
The financial crisis has led to plenty of conclusions in Europe. One among the many is that capital markets and their use for the real economy have been far from optimal. If real improvements could be achieved in this this area in the next few years, then growth could be promoted, alternative financing could be offered, the cost of financing could be lowered and access to funding might be improved. In 2015, the European Commission announced the inception of the Capital Markets Union (CMU) which will be a flagship project from the EU. Continue reading The Capital Markets Union: a New Beginning in the European Financial Sector?
Although the outcome of Poland’s parliamentary election was determined by domestic issues, the right-wing opposition’s apparent victory could herald a substantial shift in the country’s foreign policy, with major implications for its relations with the rest of Europe. Continue reading Poland’s New Government Will Re-calibrate Its Relationships With the EU Powers And the East
The year 2015 may be considered a very favourable one for the Romanian economy. According to the 2015 Spring European Commission’s forecast, the macroeconomic indicators should remain stable or improve (economic growth at 2.8 per cent, public deficit 1.25 per cent of GDP, public debt at around 40 per cent of GDP). Moreover, in April, the National Bank’s Governor Mugur Isărescu announced that Romania fulfilled all the Maastricht nominal convergence criteria and ten of eleven criteria of the Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure, recalling the commitment made by the Romanian Government to join the euro area on January 1, 2019. Continue reading Is Romania Still Likely To Adopt the Euro In January 2019?
In the middle of 2015, Poland met the economic criteria set in the Maastricht Treaty allowing an EU country to join the Eurozone. Continue reading Is There Room For a Truly Rational Discussion About the Euro in Poland?
Last weekend was abundant in domestic political calls for the Czech Republic to join the eurozone. At its two-day conference, the Social Democratic Party (CSSD) of Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka approved of the memorandum saying that the Czech Republic should adopt the euro around 2020.
While the recent European Economic Forecast of Winter 2015 talks of an average growth of 0.8 per cent in the Eurozone and 1.3 per cent across the European Union in 2014, the Montenegrin economy will grow by 2 per cent.
But the growth rate is not the most important factor when it comes to investing or doing business in a country. More crucial are the business climate, competitiveness, and other indicators.