23rd Mar 2017

Van Rompuy: Emergency euro summit 'not excluded'

  • EU leaders may be gathering in this building on Friday (Photo: Council of European Union)

Leaders of the 17 euro-using countries are expected to meet in Brussels on Friday (15 July) to help calm markets after the results come out of EU 'stress tests' on banks.

EU Council President Herman Van Rompuy at a press conference in Madrid on Tuesday said he had not yet made up his mind, but added that "such a meeting could not be excluded."

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

A diplomat from one of the eurozone countries told this website "apparently he's planning something, but we don't know when."

Another EU diplomat said: "It would make sense if there was a summit on Friday because that's when the results of the banking stress tests are published. If there is a summit, that would suggest there is more nervousness about the stability of the euro than we thought."

The EU is testing 91 major banks to see how they would cope if there was a 0.5 percent contraction in the eurozone economy, a 15 percent drop in stock markets and defaults on sovereign debt.

The results are due out amid nervousness on the financial markets over a potential default in Greece and concerns if Italy and Spain will be able to manage their borrowing.

The bank results - designed originally to restore faith in the EU's financial sector - could make matters worse.

An internal EU document obtained by Bloomberg said the risk "should not be underestimated" that private firms will use the published data to run their own stress tests and to reach more critical results than the EU officials.

A letter from the German banking association, the ZKA, to the EU-level bank body, the EBA, said: "Given the tense situation which already exists in money and capital markets, we believe publishing the results with the present level of detail would exacerbate the sovereign debt crisis."

For their part, EU finance commissioner Olli Rehn and Polish finance minister Jacek Rostowski after a meeting of the 27 EU finance ministers on Tuesday did their best to allay worries.

"It's essential that we provide the solution as the same time that we identify the problem," Rehn said.

Rostowski, speaking for the Polish EU presidency, noted: "Today we spent most of our time going over those measures [private or public sector bailouts for troubled banks], to make sure every member state is ready and up to speed."

The 17 euro-using countries' finance ministers earlier on Monday night failed to agree details of a second bailout package for Greece. The meeting instead convoked a 'Eurogroup Working Group' to look at how to manage the Greek situation, with a communique saying the taskforce will report back "shortly".

In a sign of growing bad feeling inside the currency club, the Greek leader himself on Monday lambasted the EU's treatment of Greece.

"We risk new, and possibly global, market calamities due to a contagion of doubt that could engulf our common union," George Papanderou wrote in a public letter to Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the eurogroup, the euro-using countries' club.

"Crunch time has arrived and there is no room for indecisiveness and errors such as: taking decisions that in the end prove 'too little, too late' to convince the markets we are serious ... [or] allowing a cacophony of voices and views to substitute for a shared agenda, thereby creating more panic than security."

Eurozone chief in 'drinks and women' row

[Updated] The Netherlands' Jeroen Dijsselbloem faces calls for resignation after saying that crisis-hit countries in southern Europe spent "money on drinks and women" before being helped by others.

Greek bailout talks to 'intensify'

Greece and its creditors will meet in Brussels later this week to unblock negotiations needed for a new tranche of financial aid, amid concerns over the country's economic situation.

Varoufakis back in push for ECB transparency

The former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis and German left-wing MEP Fabio De Masi want to know whether the European Central Bank overstepped its powers when putting capital controls on Greek banks in 2015.

MEPs demand stronger rules against tax evasion

MEPs in the civil liberties and economic committees voted in favour of toughening up EU wide rules on tax evasion, as they gear up for institutional talks in March on the EU's anti-money laundering directive.

Stolen Russian billions ended up in EU states

Illicit money flowing out of Russia ended up in almost every single EU state, an investigation has found, posing questions on the integrity of Europe’s banking systems.

News in Brief

  1. Man arrested in Antwerp after trying to mow people down
  2. Marine Le Pen goes to Russia
  3. Dutch post-election talks prioritise green-right coalition
  4. EU summons Turkish envoy over threats to Europeans
  5. British police make first arrests in London terror probe
  6. EU commission has received Facebook reply on WhatsApp
  7. Rome expects thousands of protesters at summit
  8. Dijsselbloem says his comments had 'Dutch directness'

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Malta EU 2017New EU Rules to Prevent Terrorism and Give More Rights to Victims Approved
  2. European Jewish Congress"Extremists Still Have Ability and Motivation to Murder in Europe" Says EJC President
  3. European Gaming & Betting AssociationAudiovisual Media Services Directive to Exclude Minors from Gambling Ads
  4. ILGA-EuropeTime for a Reality Check on International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
  5. UNICEFHuman Cost to Refugee and Migrant Children Mounts Up One Year After EU-Turkey Deal
  6. Malta EU 2017Council Adopts New Rules to Improve Safety of Medical Devices
  7. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Energy Research: How to Reach 100 Percent Renewable Energy
  8. Party of European SocialistsWe Must Renew Europe for All Europeans
  9. MEP Tomáš ZdechovskýThe European Commission Has Failed in Its Fight Against Food Waste
  10. ILGA-EuropeEP Recognises Discrimination Faced by Trans & Intersex People
  11. Nordic Council of Ministers25 Nordic Bioeconomy Cases for Sustainable Change
  12. European Free AllianceSupporting Artur Mas: Democracy and Freedom Cannot Be Convicted

Latest News

  1. Hohe Cyber-Bedrohung für Frankreichs Wahlen
  2. 'No zero terror risk', EU security commissioner warns
  3. UN could step in where EU fails in child migrant protection
  4. May: London attacker was known to the police
  5. Ending the migrant deal with Turkey may save the EU
  6. Poland unlikely to face EU discipline on rule of law
  7. Rutte courted Wilders' voters, now he must deliver
  8. Barnier to UK: trade talks will come after settling accounts